Formula 1

Verstappen: Hamilton’s British GP celebrations ‘disrespectful’

by Matt Beer
2 min read

Max Verstappen has accused Lewis Hamilton of being “disrespectful” by celebrating British Grand Prix victory while he was in hospital following their first-lap clash.

Verstappen was sent for precautionary checks having sustained a 51G impact when contact between his Red Bull and Hamilton’s Mercedes sent him into the barriers at the high-speed Copse corner.

Jul 19 : British Grand Prix review

The Red Bull driver posted a message on his social media late on Sunday night saying he had been “cleared from the hospital after all the checks were OK”, with Red Bull adding that he “was released from hospital at 22:00 this evening, following a thorough medical examination, without any major injuries”.

Hamilton was given a 10s penalty for the incident, which he overcame by charging back from fourth to win the restarted race.

“Glad I’m OK,” wrote Verstappen in a tweet.

“Very disappointed with being taken out like this.

“The penalty given does not help us and doesn’t do justice to the dangerous move Lewis made on track.

“Watching the celebrations while still in hospital is disrespectful and unsportsmanlike behaviour but we move on.”

Hamilton said he “didn’t know he was in hospital” when told by TV interviewers of Verstappen’s situation.

Asked in a follow-up question by Sky if that “took the shine off the race win”, Hamilton replied: “Honestly, look, no, it doesn’t. This is racing and of course, I would love to be able to race and for us to leave one another space and there is plenty of space on the track for us to get around, and I managed for a long time without colliding with someone.

“But when someone’s just too aggressive these things are bound to happen. There’s not a single driver here that doesn’t know how aggressive a driver could be.

“So yeah, there’s not really much more for me to say. I hope he’s OK because of course, I would love to have a wheel to wheel battle for the whole race.

“I enjoy racing with him and I’m looking forward but I will never back down from anyone and I naturally would not be bullied into being less aggressive.

“Today, this weekend, we needed the points and there was a gap. He left a gap and I went for it.”

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