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Verstappen: Ocon was flippant

NEWS STORY
13/11/2018

Max Verstappen has said that it was the attitude of Esteban Ocon following Sunday's Brazilian Grand Prix that led to the infamous shoving incident which in turn led to the Dutch driver being ordered to do two days of public service having made "deliberate physical contact" with the Frenchman.

Asked if he regretted the altercation in the FIA weigh bridge garage, Verstappen told Dutch TV channel Ziggo Sport: "It is always easy to talk afterwards.

"I just wanted to look for him and ask 'what was going on, how could something like this happen?'," he continued.

"But he immediately answered 'I was faster than you' and said it with such a smile on his face.

"I tried to be as positive as possible towards my mechanics, but of course this second place doesn't feel right. And then you meet someone like him who doesn't even apologize for what happened and reacts exactly the other way around."

Asked if Sunday was a 'hangover' from their numerous F3 clashes in 2014, the Dutch younger insisted: "No, and he's actually no competitor at all in Formula 1. I just focus on the people I have to focus on, and try to beat drivers who have good material as well."

Of course, the fact is that Verstappen admits that he deliberately sought out Ocon in order to get an explanation. And "smile" or no "smile", the youngster was not entitled to get physical. And let's not forget, only days earlier he had admitted that in the aftermath of missing out on pole in Mexico to his own teammate: "I was literally pissed off, I wouldn't even say it, but I could literally do some damage to someone if somebody would say something wrong to me after qualifying, that's how angry I was."

At the same time, it's worth noting that on-board footage from Ocon's car reveals just how much speed the Force India driver was carrying into T1.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Pavlo, 14/11/2018 11:56

"yakker, "grown-up Hamilton" was maybe a bit disrespectful but 100% safe with Kimi, and tried to avoid Sirotkin (so was actually unhappy that it ended up with a risk of collision). "grown up Ricciardo" makes bold moves but avoids collisions. This is quite opposite to "colliding into the guilty" or fighting for the position you don't need or you can't get."

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2. Posted by dejan, 14/11/2018 0:32

"Well, Hamilton apologized for his Sirotkin comment after he heard the explanation...

Which is very different from 2007 Hamilton when he managed to lose the championship with no help from anyone else. So yes, he has grown a lot since then."

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3. Posted by yakker, 13/11/2018 19:55

"You really are a spin doctor "grown-up racers, like Ricciardo & Hamilton". Short memory time. After causing Kimi and Sergey to both take avoiding action on Saturday, Hamilton then said Sergey was disrespectful, what a grown up attitude. Ricciardo " I don't see the point of coming on Sunday, I don't see the point of doing the next two races." more grown up attitude. Next you will be telling me Schumacher was right to storm down and see Coultard,the only reason that didnt turn into a fight was the amount of people intervening, or is that more of your grown up attitudes."

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4. Posted by Spindoctor, 13/11/2018 16:56

"It's easy to see why Ocon was 'flippant'. It's hard to take seriously a young multimillionaire who was daft enough to give up an easy win on the basis of his over-massaged, and over-inflated ego. Max needs to get with the programme. He's playing with the big boys now.

The incident with Ocon was unfortunate, but playing Devil's advocate for a second, once Ocon was committed to the line, where was he supposed to go? He was nearly off the track when Verstappen hit him, after all.

Proper, grown-up racers, like Ricciardo & Hamilton have learned to play a longer game & calculate the risks, especially when overtaking back-markers. During Sunday's race we saw both of them backing-off and\or taking avoiding action when confronted with other drivers who were not very cooperative. Hamilton may "whinge", but he rarely crashes into them.

It's interesting that two drivers with the worst emotional control on the grid both were RBR's favoured sons. Coincidence or causality?"

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5. Posted by ESTM PRFT, 13/11/2018 16:41

"I looked up 'Flippant' in the dictionary, and there was a picture of Max..."

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6. Posted by Pavlo, 13/11/2018 15:14

"I feel that Vettel lost a championship because of not being able to control the emotions. It's a pity there is no one around Max to advise him to calm down. Unfortunately proving something to Ocon (or to Bottas in Italy) is more important for him than a victory or points.
Video clearly shows that he was defending his position before turn 1, instead of really doing what he says today - focusing on Lewis."

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7. Posted by *TestaRossa*, 13/11/2018 14:51

"@ KLMN you are a honest guy ..most Riccardo fans hate Max because Max is faster. Funny these F1 keyboard hooligans."

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8. Posted by klmn, 13/11/2018 14:43

"@Stitch431 again you see in so clear .
I am a Riciardo fan but i must say Max is a greater performer on and off the track , Red Bull will love the publicity and the cheering especially in South America a big market.
"

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9. Posted by Mad Matt, 13/11/2018 13:36

"The rules allow Ocon to overtake to unlap himself... which is what he did. The rules don't say "only if there's another driver close behind, or if....".

As far as I can see Max didn't give him enough room and as Hamilton said why did Max make a big deal out of it? Why not just let him go?

I'm a fan of neither of the drivers involved and I gave credit to Max for a more mature attitude earlier in the year but this time he's acting like a badly behaved child at primary school. Yes he was leading a race he probably would have won and it's natural that he's frustrated but pushing and shoving is just childish and unacceptable. I don't accept that sort of behaviour from my children and I don't expect it from someone like Max."

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10. Posted by Stitch431, 13/11/2018 10:09

"Ocon had nothing to gain from passing Verstappen as he had no one directly after him and no one nearly close enough to pass in front of Max. Therefore it was just out of frustration he made this unnecessary pass. At the weighing bridge, he clearly sought to provoke Max instead of apologizing. It was not smart of Max to react the way he did, but I'd like to see anyone who just lost victory for a dumb action by a backmarker (who only was faster in one of three sectors!) and then being met by such sickening remarks. I wonder how many would be able to keep their temper down when still being on 180. Ocon is just a sore loser and a real pain. He clearly is frustrated because he was not capable of beating Perez in the two seasons at Force India, therefore he seems not to have the same talent as Max has."

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