The Chinese Formula One Grand Prix concluded two laps earlier than usual this year, as the official charged with waving the end-of-race checkered flag got a little bit over-eager and came out twirling two laps early.
The race’s 54 laps, although a bit short of the planned 56, were apparently quite a thrill, with the Mercedes team coming in first and second. One of the Mercedes drivers, Lewis Hamilton, spoke to the WSJ about the flag faux pas:
“That was very strange. I was thinking, Am I seeing things? I was coming across the line expecting to do another lap and all of a sudden I looked for a split second and I saw the flag,” Hamilton said after the race. “I did lose a second or so. I asked the team, they said no, so I just kept going.”
The lovely British tabloid The Mirror said that, “In the land of the rip-off it was only natural the sport was given a fake finish.” On a slightly less obnoxious note, The Guardian comments that, “The Chinese Grand Prix was certainly not the most exciting race – but it hardly required the drastic action taken by the man wielding the chequered flag.”
[Image via Formula 1]