Max Verstappen considers “really disrespectful” the celebration made by Lewis Hamilton last week, after winning the British Grand Prix.
By the time that victory came, Verstapen was in a hospital after the Brit himself caused him to crash and knock him out of the race.
Although Hamilton called him later to discuss the matter, Verstappen remains upset with the seven-time F1 champion over the first-lap mishap at the high-speed Copse corner. Hamilton’s Mercedes made contact with Verstappen’s Red Bull, who went crashing into a tire barrier and required precautionary checks.
“One guy is in the hospital and the other is waving a flag like nothing happened, when he sent someone against a barrier at a G-force of 51. Not only that, but the whole reaction of the team,” Verstappen said Thursday. “This is not how you celebrate a triumph, especially because of the way they got it, that’s what seems really disrespectful to me. I would be upset with myself for an action like that and I definitely wouldn’t celebrate like that. “
In passing he lashed out at Mercedes for his euphoria.
“It shows who they really are, it comes out after a pressure situation,” Verstappen said. “But I wouldn’t want to be seen like that … I wouldn’t celebrate that way.”
Hamilton received a 10-second penalty but was able to pass Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari to take the top near the end and claim his 99th victory. In passing, he reduced Verstappen’s lead in the overall table from 33 points to eight.
“I’m not happy with what happened there and losing so many points,” added Verstappen. “I don’t think the sanction was correct. Especially at the speed we were going, we found ourselves miles ahead of Mercedes with speed. A 10-second penalty does nothing, so that penalty definitely should have been more severe. “
Hamilton defended himself arguing that at the time of the celebration he was not aware that Verstappen had been transferred to the hospital.
The rivalry between Verstappen, 23, and Hamilton, 36, puts one of the most talented young drivers in recent years face-to-face with a veteran seeking an eighth straight title.
On Thursday night, the FIA exonerated Hamilton of any wrongdoing, after reviewing the crash at the request of Red Bull. (AFP)