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After a lengthy stewards’ investigation on Sunday evening, Michael Schumacher’s podium finish stands in Valencia. The Mercedes driver was judged to have slowed sufficiently under yellow flags after Lewis Hamilton had crashed.
Schumacher’s third place is his first since returning to Formula 1 in 2010. After the race, question marks rose as the stewards confirmed that an investigation was underway for passing two marshal posts under yellow flag conditions, with his DRS open.
After reviewing the evidence and hearing the opinions of Schumacher, the stewards – including ex driver Mika Salo – decided that no penalty or reprimand should be given.
"I wasn’t even thinking of the podium,” he said of today’s result. “I only knew when I crossed the line and asked the guys where I had finished. Before that, I had seen Mark Webber’s pit board telling him he was eighth, and then seventh, and I knew I was one place ahead. I couldn’t believe it when they told me it was a podium!
“I sort of lost count because I was so busy in the closing laps. It is one of those moment which you definitely enjoy very deeply and it’s a wonderful feeling, to be back on the podium after such a long time.”
At the Spanish Grand Prix in May, Sebastian Vettel was handed a drive-through penalty for a similar incident; although his DRS was open, on that occasion the stewards decided that – unlike Schumacher today – Vettel had not slowed down enough.
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