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Lewis Hamilton was just inches away from suffering a serious injury during the Japanese GP

New footage shot from inside Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes shows the incredible moment he avoids debris from Charles Leclerc’s car by INCHES during heated Japanese Grand Prix

  • Lewis Hamilton was just inches away from catastrophe during Sunday’s GP
  • New footage shows just how close he came to being hit by huge piece of debris
  • Part of Charles Leclerc’s front wing flew off after it was damaged in earlier crash
  • The Brit was furious that Leclerc ignored Ferrari chiefs’ demand to come into pit
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Lewis Hamilton narrowly avoided being struck by a huge piece of debris from Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari during Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix.

New footage from inside Hamilton’s Mercedes shows he was just inches away from catastrophe.

Leclerc collided with Max Verstappen on the first corner of the race, causing considerable damage to his front wing.

Lewis Hamilton was just inches away from suffering a serious injury during the Japanese GP

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Lewis Hamilton was just inches away from suffering a serious injury during the Japanese GP

Huge piece of debris (circled) flew off of Charles Leclerc's car but Hamilton narrowly dodged it

Huge piece of debris (circled) flew off of Charles Leclerc's car but Hamilton narrowly dodged it

Huge piece of debris (circled) flew off of Charles Leclerc’s car but Hamilton narrowly dodged it

The 21-year-old ignored demands from Ferrari chiefs to head straight into the pits despite breaking the left front endplate of his car in the collision. 

The part dragged along the ground during the race and eventually broke off, snapping Hamilton’s wing mirror as it flew back. 

Hamilton reacted quickly to adjust his car and dodge the huge piece of debris. Had it not been for his nimble awareness, it could have easily ended in disaster.

The Brit, who finished third behind Sebastian Vettel and winner Valtteri Bottas, was furious with Leclerc’s decision to stay out on the track.

Leclerc stayed out on the tracks despite damaging his car in earlier crash with Max Verstappen
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Leclerc stayed out on the tracks despite damaging his car in earlier crash with Max Verstappen

Leclerc stayed out on the tracks despite damaging his car in earlier crash with Max Verstappen

Red Bull driver Verstappen described Leclerc's driving on Sunday as 'irresponsible'

Red Bull driver Verstappen described Leclerc's driving on Sunday as 'irresponsible'

Red Bull driver Verstappen described Leclerc’s driving on Sunday as ‘irresponsible’

‘How he’s not been given a warning flag I don’t know. [He’s] Lost a wing mirror,’ he fumed afterwards. 

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Verstappen also blasted Leclerc after the race, adding: ‘I like hard racing, but I don’t think this was hard racing, I think it was irresponsible driving into turn two. He had a bad start so for sure he was trying to recover places but there’s only so much you can do. It’s a shame that it happens.’ 

Leclerc has been penalised by the FIA following an investigation into the incident and received a 15-second time penalty, which resulted in him being demoted to seventh.

Hamilton, meanwhile, remains 44 points ahead of his Mercedes team-mate Bottas in the Drivers’ Championship standing going into the final four races of the season.