“For Hamilton, it is a horrible situation, because now they are following the protocol correctly,” Bird told the BBC’s Chequered Flag podcast. “If they had followed the protocol correctly, he would be an eight-time World Champion, to be honest, and Max Verstappen would be about to be a first-time World Champion, a very impressive first-time World Champion.
“It reminds me a lot of Senna, when he was directing. You had the FIA change the rules at the final chicane at Suzuka, and Senna came out of the drivers’ briefing [in Japan 1990] saying, ‘That’s not fair, you completely destroyed me last year, you took my license from me, you banned me so I’m leaving’. It’s a little similar. I can certainly understand why Lewis Hamilton feels a little disadvantaged.”