Red Bull chiefs knew Verstappen in the wrong, says Mercedes

Red Bull's senior management knew from the off that Max Verstappen was to blame for his crash with Lewis Hamilton at Formula 1's Italian Grand Prix, reckons Mercedes.

Verstappen was handed a three-place grid penalty for the next race in Russia after the stewards deemed he was predominantly to blame for the accident with Lewis Hamilton at Monza.

Red Bull's senior chiefs Christian Horner and Helmut Marko both insisted in the aftermath of the clash that it was nothing more than a racing incident.

But for Mercedes, well aware of how much Red Bull backs its drivers in controversial moments, it says it was telling how neutral its rival was on this occasion.

Mercedes' trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin said: "We obviously felt strongly that Lewis had done absolutely nothing wrong, and that Max was the one predominantly to blame.

"I think if you look at the fact that even Helmut and Christian weren't trying to blame Lewis, it sort of feels like they know Max was in the wrong, because they will try and blame Lewis at any opportunity."

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, looks on Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12 after colliding

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, looks on Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12 after colliding

Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

Shovlin reckoned that the crash with Verstappen, which came as they both tried to recover from slow pitstops, derailed a good opportunity for Hamilton to go for victory.

"Ultimately, I think it cost Lewis a win and certainly a second place, as you'll always feel that three places is relatively easy to overcome if you've got a competitive car," he said. "But that's all in the past now.

"We need to make sure we put a good weekend together in Russia, and it's a place where the car should be competitive.

"But we've had pretty messy races for quite a long time now. The team needs to not get distracted and focus on delivering the kind of performance that we know we can, and the kind of performance that we need to, to win these championships."

Read Also:

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has stood by his belief that both Verstappen and Hamilton had roles to play in the crash.

"For me, having looked at it again, I felt that Max deserved a bit more space to be given at Turn 2," explained Horner.

"I think Lewis gave him enough space through Turn 1, and then into Turn 2, then it just felt he could have given him a bit more room to work with.

"I'm sure the other guy will argue it the other way. But I think, when you look at it objectively, you have to say, it is a racing incident."

shares
comments
Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash
Previous article

Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

Next article

Portimao added to F1 2021 video game in first major update

Portimao added to F1 2021 video game in first major update
Load comments
The code of conduct debate prompted by the Alonso/Raikkonen marginal call Prime

The code of conduct debate prompted by the Alonso/Raikkonen marginal call

Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen's clash in Austin has thrust the debate about rights and wrongs of wheel-to-wheel combat firmly into the public spotlight, prompting complaints about the Formula 1 rules process. But what can the FIA do to prevent the issue resurfacing?

How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in F1 2021 battle Prime

How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in F1 2021 battle

Supremacy in the McLaren vs Ferrari fight over third place in the constructors’ championship has ebbed and flowed between the two teams so far in the 2021 Formula 1 season. But for several key reasons, right now it seems the advantage has swung decisively back to the Scuderia and McLaren knows it.

Formula 1
Oct 27, 2021
The details that boosted Verstappen and held back Hamilton in Austin Prime

The details that boosted Verstappen and held back Hamilton in Austin

As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
US Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a baking hot afternoon in Texas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Prime

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment.

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Why a misunderstood Kimi Raikkonen will thrive in retirement Prime

Why a misunderstood Kimi Raikkonen will thrive in retirement

Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man Anthony Peacock explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it).

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
How Verstappen has become F1 champion material Prime

How Verstappen has become F1 champion material

As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
Why long-run times should please Red Bull in Austin F1 battle Prime

Why long-run times should please Red Bull in Austin F1 battle

Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be set to be another close contest.

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021