After crashing out of the British Grand Prix in an opening lap incident with eventual race winner Lewis Hamilton, Red Bull driver Max Verstappen has slammed Hamilton’s celebrations, labelling them ‘disrespectful and unsportsmanlike.’
On the first lap, Hamilton clipped Verstappen at Copse Corner as they fought for the lead. Verstappen’s lead in the championship fell from 33 to seven points after Hamilton won his eighth British Grand Prix despite a ten-second penalty.
Verstappen was treated at the FIA medical facility and taken to hospital as a precaution, but was not injured in the incident.
Later that evening, Verstappen criticized Hamilton’s celebration of his win with the Silverstone fans, which he watched from the hospital.
Verstappen tweeted: “Glad I’m ok. 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 behavior but we move on”.
In an emotional post-race interview, team boss Christian Horner also slammed Hamilton, feeling the punishment didn’t fit the crime.
“He ran wide. If you look at the overhead, he’s run wide into the corner.
“He’s carried too much speed. That move was never on. Lewis is a world champion of seven titles. That was an amateur’s mistake and a desperate mistake.
“I don’t care what Lewis said. Have a look at your own analysis, draw your own comparisons. For me, that’s a hollow victory.
“Putting a fellow driver in hospital, writing off the car, and receiving a menial penalty and winning the grand prix doesn’t feel like much of a penalty.
“I think it just felt like a desperate move from Lewis. He lost the start, go down the straight, wheel banging with max down there, then to stick a wheel up the inside of Copse corner, one of the fastest corners in the championship, pretty much flat out, 180 mph, there’s only ever going to be one consequence like that.
“It’s just disappointing from a seven-time world champion that he makes such a desperate move and puts a fellow driver in hospital.
“I think he was wound up by yesterday’s result; you could see that yesterday … and I think, the atmosphere, the crowd and everything, he was obviously pretty motivated and made a massive misjudgement. Yes, he got a penalty for it, but it’s fairly meaningless.
“That was his only opportunity, I think. He knew had Max come through that corner, he might not have seen him again for the afternoon. For me, it was a desperate move that thankfully didn’t have worse consequences than a written-off car and a bruised and battered driver,” said Horner.