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Gearbox change could pay dividend for Hamilton

NEWS STORY
20/07/2014

Mercedes has revealed that Lewis Hamilton will need a gearbox change ahead of today's German Grand Prix.

In a brief tweet, the German team wrote: "We can confirm that @LewisHamilton's gearbox will be changed for the race owing to accident damage incurred yesterday. 5 place penalty."

In a follow-up, the team added: "The guys are working on the car now to repair everything for the race. It's going to be a busy morning!"

Following earlier claims that the Briton would start from the pitlane, the latest move virtually guarantees such a move.

On the other hand, after two days of scorching hot weather, the fact that rain is now falling hard on the Hockenheim circuit might have forced the team's hand, the teams having had no wet running thus far this weekend. Possibly a very smart move from the Brackley outfit.

Talk of a plan to start him from the pitlane first came about as a result of his crash during Q1 yesterday, the team subsequently considering switching him from Brembo discs to Carbon Industrie following the failure that led to yesterday's accident.

Under the rules of parc ferme this would constitute a change of car specification, which in itself would mean a penalty. Statrting from the pitlane would allow the switch and, now that the rain is falling, a few other 'tweaks'.

Chris Balfe

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