Burnouts in borrowed cars are a staple of any gearhead's repertoire, and it appears the affliction extends all the way up to the F1 ranks. Just days ahead of the Australian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton has been apprehended outside Albert Park laying some rubber in a 2010 Mercedes-Benz E550 sedan.

The company car's 382-horsepower V-8 was no doubt a willing participant in the hoonage, but the Aussie police weren't pleased with the behavior, citing Hamilton for "improper use of a motor vehicle" according to GMM. Hamilton was regretful over his actions--or at least about getting caught--saying he was "worried this would dent his reputation," according to Senior Constable Scott Woodford. Hamilton's official statement on the matter, released by McLaren: "This evening, I was driving in an over-exuberant manner and, as a result, was stopped by the police. What I did was silly, and I want to apologize for it."

Smoky burnouts and "fish-tailing" may be improper use of a motor vehicle for the safety nannies Down Under, but we can hardly envision a more proper use of a big V-8. Here's to Hamilton, though he might choose a better venue next time.