Brawn apologies to model for flag gaff

Wednesday, 13 juny 2018, 10:39 , by Martin Macdonald

Formula One's Ross Brawn has issued an apology to Winnie Harlow, the model who mistakenly waved the checkered flag prematurely during the Canadian Grand Prix, and has pleaded with fans not to place blame on her for the gaff, saying she was an "innocent victim".

The race in Montreal on Sunday turned into a sea of confusion when the flag went up one lap too early, with many drivers questioning what was going on over the team radio, and Daniel Ricciardo even being stripped of the fastest lap record after the final lap was expunged.

Harlow received most of the blame in the immediate aftermath, but reports surfaced that it was actually an error by race stewards. Brawn has assured fans that the model did nothing she wasn't told to.

"Supermodel Winnie Harlow was an innocent victim at the end of the race," said the Liberty Media boss.

READ MORE: Winnie Harlow NOT to blame for flag blunder, FIA confirm
READ MORE: World Cup won't be better than Canadian GP - Vettel

"She was asked to wave the chequered flag, but was told to do so after 69 of the 70 laps had been completed. I was sad to see her so heavily criticised when, as race director Charlie Whiting explained, it was all down to a misunderstanding between two officials.

"Winnie simply followed the instructions she was given and I want to apologise for the grief she received and thank her for supporting Formula 1."

The incident initially called into question whether celebrities should be allowed to wave the checkered flag, but Brawn pointed to an incident from China a few years ago which did not involve anyone famous, saying that it happened regardless of who had the flag.

"Something similar happened in China in 2014, but in that instance it wasn't a celebrity waving the flag," he explained.

"As the saying goes, 'to err is human' and all of us - drivers, managers, engineers, mechanics, journalists and fans - make mistakes. The important thing is to learn from them and try to prevent them happening again in the future.

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Comments (26)

  • Martin Elliott
    Isn't (real) Charlie Whiting in charge of FIA Race Control? I think the Stewards should have fined him personally ?5,000 and the RC ?50,000, for unsporting behaviour, and failure to have a penalty in the regs when they had anticipated the error!!
  • Jeremy Dyer
    Gotta love the people making fun of her skin without knowing why it's like that. She has vitiligo. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/vitiligo/symptoms-causes/syc-20355912
  • Patricia Hollis
    With so many F1 fans in the world , why give this honor to a person who does not follow the sport? Why not give it to a fan instead? Her pre race interview said it all.
  • Estelle Toulmin
    Good, she was only doing what she was told to do, it was the person that gave her the go ahead that should be in trouble! Let her be!
  • Jason Giddings
    She didnt even know the lead car! Why was she anywhere near a flag? They are so good at fineing teams and drivers maybe the should fine themselves.
  • Tom Schultz
    Does not address the basic question of just what the hell this unqualified bimbo was doing there in the first place.
  • Josh W Benning
    Formula One stop trying to impress and start trying to give us a show of Motorsport!!! It’s in fact what’s it’s about!!!
  • Mario Rodriguez Fernandez
    Yeah... penalize him with 2 points of his license and 5 places in the starting grid. Just kidding
  • Tim Kohlbus
    Just my opinion, but no one in the starter stand but the official starter and his ass’ts.
  • Jorge Leandro
    who must to ask apologies it's FIA for make the formula one to stay too boring
  • Christopher Burton
    Winnie made world headline news. Good for her. A bit of excitement in not exciting race
  • Joaquin Carreño Gutierrez
    Hands down if you think that clowns must not appear in races
  • Alween Lopez
    Nah... Brawn is just taking the Heat... like a gentleman...
  • Damian Budzik
    Who the hell is she anyway? Just have your employees do the job.
  • Carol Treurnicht
    She just should not have been there in the first place. End of
  • Luis Boinho
    Why such a big deal about this
  • Marko Mravak
    Rocking the Wolverine look. Nice
  • John Secker
    Has she got jizz on her face
  • Stuart Williamson
    She got yoghurt on her chin??
  • Sebastian Ra?
    Marzena Klusaczyk

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