Max Verstappen dismisses British GP comparisons with Lewis Hamilton incident in Brazil
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Max Verstappen has dismissed any suggestion that the incident with Lewis Hamilton at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix was anywhere near the same as their clash at the British Grand Prix. On lap 48 in Brazil, Hamilton was alongside the Dutchman towards Turn 4 when Verstappen ran wide on the entrance to the corner.
Hamilton had to take evasive action and both cars ran off the track on the exit of the corner, with Verstappen remaining in front.
Ten laps later, Hamilton managed to swing past Verstappen to take the lead of the race, and with it the win in Interlagos.
However, the incident has been compared to the opening lap at Silverstone as Hamilton tried to pass up the inside at Copse Corner.
Verstappen defended hard refusing to give any space to the Briton before the pair collided and sent the Dutchman spearing into the tyre wall.
Hamilton was hit with a 10-second time penalty for the incident, which landed Verstappen in hospital for further precautionary checks.
Yet when told that their tear-tangle in Brazil was ‘quite similar’ to the British GP one, he was asked: “Why is one OK and the other not?”
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“I don’t think it’s the same,” he said. “So I don’t know what he is referring to.
“It’s a completely different corner as well, so yeah, there’s not much more to comment, it’s not the same.”
Mercedes have since requested a right to review the incident after they say they have new evidence and hope the FIA will grant them a full review of the incident.
If found in the wrong, the championship leader Verstappen could be handed a range of penalties, like a time penalty or a grid penalty to be added on at another race.
The evidence will be shown via a video link with the stewards at 5pm local time on Thursday in Qatar, 2pm GMT.
But speaking after the race in Brazil, Verstappen felt he had not been in the wrong.
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“We both, of course, tried to be ahead into the corner and so I braked a bit later to try and keep the position,” he said.
“The tyres were already a bit worn so I was really on the edge of grip so that’s why I think I was already not fully on the apex so then it’s a safer way of just running a bit wide there.
“In a way I was of course happy that the stewards decided that we could just keep on racing because I think the racing, in general, was really good.”
The Sao Paulo result means the two, at least as things stand now, head into the Qatar Grand Prix separated by just 14 points.
“I mean it’s been like this the whole year,” Verstappen said. “Isn’t it! It went up, comes down, went behind, I’m back in front, so you know a lot of things can happen still.”
Verstappen has a 14 point lead over Hamilton in the driver standings, with just three races remaining of the season.
With 78 points still up for grabs, the championship is set to go down to the wire in Abu Dhabi.
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