“Lewis is not Houdini”– Former F1 driver John Watson blames Max Verstappen for the collision with Lewis Hamilton during the Italian GP.
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton’s collision during the Italian Grand Prix added more heat to already super intense rivalry for the world championship.
Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton says F1’s ‘halo’ safety device saved his life in his crash at the Italian GP.
The 36-year-old was hit by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.
Verstappen was handed a 3-place grid penalty after the race, to be taken at the Russian GP in 2 weeks’ time.
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Whilst both drivers defended their stand in the incident, former McLaren driver John Watson has come to make a case for Hamilton and criticised Verstappen for being too desperate.
“It was an unviable place, or opportunity, to overtake,” five-time Grand Prix winner Watson told RacingNews365.com. “The reason why Verstappen did what he did was he knew that he needed to get ahead of Lewis at the earliest opportunity.”
“If Lewis had exited the chicane ahead of Max, it would have been very hard for Max then to overtake him on pure pace. It was Lewis’ corner. There is no way you come in, go around the outside and then expect the car that was ahead to just disappear.”
“Lewis is not Houdini. He was physically there and there was no space,” he added.
Triggered by poor pitstop
An 11-second long pitstop by Red Bull is a rarity, but it happened in Monza, and it certainly made Verstappen lose ground in the race. Therefore, Watson suggests that triggered his move.
“Max maybe lost his judgement, or his rationale, in what’s viable and what’s not viable,” added Watson. “He ‘did a Max’, sticking his nose up and trying to bully his way through to get ahead of Lewis.”
“It was poor judgement, based on frustration, and maybe anger, at what had taken place in the pit-stop,” he concluded. In the end, Mercedes managed to have an extension over its lead over Red Bull in the constructors’ championship after a monstrous performance by Valtteri Bottas.
Moreover, a 5-second penalty to Sergio Perez certainly hurt Red Bull, as it made them lose four points because of the former’s drop of positions in the final result.