Despite holding off the Mercedes driver for the rest of the race and crossing the finish line in front, the time penalty ensured the 31-year-old Vettel finished second.
FIA officials met with the team ahead of the French Grand Prix this weekend but ultimately rejected Ferrari’s right to review the decision.
Despite Ferrari being optimistic that they had “overwhelming” evidence, stewards concluded that there were “no significant and relevant new elements which were unavailable to the parties at the time.”
The German driver staged a mini protest after the race, initially refusing to take to the podium and swapping the number one and two boards that had been placed in front of the Mercedes and Ferrari cars.
“I think we had a great race and the stewards’ decision is too harsh,” said Vettel, after the race.
However, Vettel’s reaction after the race was ridiculed by some on social media, with many likening his antics to a childish strop.
“EXACTLY what my daughter Flo would do if she didn’t get her own way. She’s 6,” said former F1 presenter Jake Humphrey.
Meanwhile, others were sympathetic to the German and questioned the stewards’ decision.
“Any of the stewards ever raced at the front in F1? Didn’t watch the race.. have now seen the ‘incident’. Mental penalty,” tweeted former F1 driver Mark Webber.
Hamilton wins again
Amid all the controversy, Hamilton secured his fifth win of the season and maintained his team’s 100% record. The Briton leads the drivers’ standings with 162 points, with Valtteri Bottas second on 133 and Vettel third on 100.
After the race, the Briton defended the decision to punish his rival: “Ultimately the rules say when you go off you have to come back on in a safe manner and I was alongside and I had to back off to avoid a collision and I guess that’s why they made the decision.”