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Russell and Verstappen in spat over Albon

NEWS STORY
18/07/2020

A difficult day for Red Bull proved especially troublesome for Alex Albon, who - much like his teammate - has struggled with his car for much of the weekend.

Failing to make it into Q3, the youngster criticised his team for sending him out on both his Q2 runs in traffic.

Off the pace of his teammate in last weekend's Styrian Grand Prix, finishing 11s down on Verstappen even though the Dutchman made an extra pit stop, it would appear that - not for the first time - the vultures are circling overhead, egged on by sections of the media that smell a story.

Red Bull has history, and in particular its 'consultant', Helmut Marko, the driving force behind the successful driver programme and also widely seen as the company's Lord High Executioner.

Indeed, it was when Marko chose to drop Pierre Gasly after last year's Hungarian Grand Prix that Albon was promoted to the seat alongside Verstappen.

Feeling that his long-time friend and rival is not being treated fairly by the Austrian team, following today's session Russell was publicly critical of its attitude towards the Thai driver.

"I've known Alex for the past 15 years," the Williams drive told Sky Sports, "been in the same paddock as him, he's one of the best drivers we've all raced... Max, Charles, all of us would say it.

"He's been at the front of everything he's done," he continued. "I don't know what the hell is going on but I feel really bad for him because he's being made to look like an idiot and he's absolutely not.

"He's won everything he's done. So I don't know what's going on, but they need to sort it out for him."

Told of the Briton's comments, Verstappen was quick to react.

"I think first of all George doesn't know anything about the team," he said. "I think it's better he just focuses on his car and his performance instead of speaking for someone else.

"We just don't have a good balance throughout the corner," he added, "there's understeer, oversteer, lack of grip... not having a lot of top speed as well, so everything together just makes it slow.

"It's definitely not looking great," he admitted, "I hope this is going to be our worst weekend and really hopefully learn a lot from this and try to of course rectify it a little bit for the upcoming races."

Check out our Saturday gallery from Budapest, here.

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1. Posted by DRAGON F1, 21/07/2020 16:12

"@USA1
DREAM ON!! HAHAHA

Max Verstappen, the best driver in the world CRASHES ON THE WAY TO THE STARTING GRID!!!

That's about Roman Grosjean level imo!! Lol

Actually, depending on timing and luck, or bad luck, Max Verstappen might never be F1 champion at all!!?

I mean, by the time Max is totally fed up with Red Bull and maybe goes to Mercedes, the team may be already in decline by then!! You never know!! Lol

George Russell stuck up for his longtime friend Alex Albon, and it was lovely and honest!!
Tbh I don't believe another driver would stick up for Max because I don't believe he has any real driver friends because of the unfair and forceful way he is on the track!!! "

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by USA1, 19/07/2020 17:49

"Max is probably the best driver on the grid, and no that’s not a Joke and kudos to Max for speaking up for his team mate, Max has the talent to beat Lewis and when it comes down to the things he wants he has the right to do so, I’m sure that every team on the grid would love to have him as a driver!"

Rating: Negative (-2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by Barslug, 19/07/2020 8:45

"Favoring one driver over another isn’t how you find out which one is best. Max is just a spoiled kid that is being enabled by his team. Put them on truly equal footing and see just how quickly Max goes into meltdown mode! "

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by trackrecords, 19/07/2020 6:15

"Dragon F1 - it's always been spoilt-brat Max, he's gets what he wants so why change? I remember him in karting when he was on course to clinch the World/Euro title (I forget which, I'm going senile) at the Lincolnshire PFi circuit. He was leading but gradually was caught and as he tried to defend his lead, but the two karts became entangled and the pair spun. As the other kid tried to separate the karts Max was kicking them frantically instead in a tantrum. Max finished the series runner-up but didn't go to the podium. I remember the trophy being in the circuit office for months before he actually collected it. Totally unlike Lewis - I remember when Manor's John Booth first started running him in Formula Renault and saying that Lewis was self-confident of his ability, but not cocky. Perhaps Max needs humility lessons?"

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

5. Posted by DRAGON F1, 19/07/2020 4:27

"Max Verstappen is still an immature 'spoilt brat' imo, and Christian Horner's behaviour in always praising and defending him is just creating this totally egoistic 'monster'!! Lol

Red Bull is obviously giving Max the preferential treatment in the team against Alex Albon, just like Max against Ricciardo, which is why Daniel left the team!! For example: giving Max parts belonging to Alex and sending Alex out on track first or in traffic etc., etc.!

This kind of behaviour towards Alex will only hurt the Red Bull team in the long run!!

Tbh Christian Horner always saying that Max is the best driver in the world is a complete joke to me and this will only feed the egoistic 'monster' and will inevitably harm Max's development as a driver and person, and is evidently hurting the whole team!!

Red Bull is relying solely on Max to perform and Max is relying on Red Bull to perform, will likely end in no championship titles for either for the foreseeable future!! Lol"

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6. Posted by kenji, 19/07/2020 2:40

"Once again we see corrosive elements emerging. I think that Russel maybe touched a raw spot with his comments. Refreshing to see some 'off piste' comments getting column space."

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