Max Verstappen says his race ending incident involving Aston Martin Red Bull Racing team-mate Daniel Ricciardo is something the pair will learn not to do again, but believes that not allowing them to race each other is not the way forward for the future.
The two Red Bull drivers engaged in battle with each other over the course of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with the drivers touching each other and making nail-biting overtakes.
But the moment came on Lap 41 when both drivers crashed out of the race at Turn one when Ricciardo was aiming to pass Verstappen, only to find the Dutch driver defending hard and not leaving the Australian enough space, causing the collision.
Reflecting on the race, Verstappen says the incident doesn’t look good on both drivers and doesn’t place a blame on himself or Ricciardo.
“Today was just really disappointing for the Team and we lost many points unnecessarily” said Verstappen.
“I don’t think we need to speak about fault because at the end of the day we are racing for a team and representing a lot of people, so when this happens it is not good for both of us.
“The tow was very strong and our speed was very similar, so we were then always very close to each other. Before the accident it was hard racing but fair I think and we gave each other space, we had a little brush with the wheels but I think in racing that can happen, but what happened afterwards is not good.”
In only the fourth race of the 2018 season, this is Verstappen’s third incident in a row where he has been involved in an accident with another driver.
Red Bull have had a past history of their drivers hitting each other, with the infamous Turkish Grand Prix in 2010 where Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel collided whilst battling for the lead. Red Bull responded by imposing team orders whenever their drivers engage for position, but have lighten down over recent years and allowed their drivers to race.
Verstappen however, believes that controlling their race when battling one another isn’t the way forward for the future.
“We will learn from this and have to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” Verstappen continued.
“I don’t think not letting us race anymore is the way forward but of course we will talk this over as a team and learn from it. We are always very fair to each other and have spoken immediately about this.
“For now, I’m just sorry and want to apologise to the people we represent here and at the factory as well.”