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Kimi Raikkonen says Verstappen payback moves in Spa "not correct" in F1

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Kimi Raikkonen says Verstappen payback moves in Spa "not correct" in F1
Sep 1, 2016, 6:21 PM

Kimi Raikkonen has responded to Max Verstappen’s comments that his aggressive defence against the Finn during the Belgian Grand Prix was a respon...

Kimi Raikkonen has responded to Max Verstappen’s comments that his aggressive defence against the Finn during the Belgian Grand Prix was a response to their first corner clash at the race at Spa by saying that “payback” moves have no place in Formula 1.

Raikkonen and Verstappen collided just after the 2007 world champion’s Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel, who squeezed the two drivers braking on the inside line for the La Source hairpin, hit the Finn and spun as a result.

Both Raikkonen and Verstappen had to pit for repairs after the contact and were then involved in two further controversial incidents before they finished ninth and 11th. On lap 13 of the 44-lap race, they nearly touched again at the Les Combes corner and on the following tour Raikkonen was forced to brake as Verstappen moved across his line on the high-speed Kemmel Straight.

XPB

After the race last weekend, Verstappen told reporters that he had fought the Ferrari drivers harder as a result of the first corner incident, saying: "If they screw up my race, I'm not going to make it easy for them. I think they should understand that.

"I'm not going to say: 'come on through'. But all that happened after turn one. If turn one hadn't happened, I wouldn't have been so aggressive and pushed Raikkonen out like that."

Speaking in the pre-event press conference for the Italian Grand Prix, Raikkonen responded to the 18-year-old by saying that F1 is not the place to deliver “payback” moves.

Kimi Raikkonen

“Everyone is allowed to say what they feel like,” he said. “I have nothing personally against him and it’s just certain things, in my view, [are] not correct.

“If somebody says that he does something because of what happened in the first corner, that is payback and I don’t think it’s the correct sport to start doing [that], purposely paying back some things that have happened. It can end up in a very bad way.”

“Yes, people make mistakes, everybody has made it and it will happen to all of us so you just have to accept it, but it’s not the place to start acting silly and paying back something that has happened.”

Max Verstappen Kimi Raikkonen

When asked what he thought of Verstappen’s driving during the race at Spa, Raikkonen explained that inconsistent stewards decisions were more of a problem when it came to addressing dangerous moves, before making it clear he had nothing personal against the Dutchman, who was also criticised for his defensive driving at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

He said: “Sometimes you feel it’s not correct what happens on the circuit but I think the biggest problem is that this is not always the same. As drivers we always discuss it and it’s a bit up and down and I think that could be improved.

“Personally I have noting against Max – he’s doing a good job and he’s fast and I know it’s not a personal thing. It’s just certain things, at least in my feelings, [are] not correct if you have to slow down or brake from full speed.”

Sebastian Vettel

Vettel also responded to Verstappen’s statement that the Ferrari drivers should be “ashamed” of their actions at Spa by calling for F1 drivers to have more respect for one another when competing in a sport they enjoy.

He said: “I think it’s nothing, I don’t think we have anything to be ashamed about. It’s a question of respect and I think we’re all here to race. We love what we do; we share one great passion, which dictates a very big part of our lives.

“We might get along, we might not get along, that’s not really that important, but I think we should always have respect for each other.”

What do you make of Raikkonen’s response to Verstappen’s comments? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below or head over to the JAonF1 Facebook page for more discussion.
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