“They will be even more determined not to lift off the throttle the next time”– Mika Hakkinen thinks both drivers will be more cautious to not spoil their championship aims.
The crash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen has outraged Red Bull’s camp, but most of the grid and F1 experts have classified it as a racing incident, including Mika Hakkinen.
The former two-times world champion has tried to explain that the incident was not a fault of Hamilton, and could happen when two drivers are racing wheel to wheel at this level. Additionally, he is relieved that Verstappen is safe.
“Sunday’s collision between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton during the British Grand Prix was a pure racing incident,” Hakkinen said. “When you are racing at those speeds and going for the win, these things can sometimes happen.”
“As a top driver, going for the World Championship, you are not there to back off. It’s our job to race, and I know from my own experiences that when you are racing wheel-to-wheel there is always the possibility of the cars touching.”
Both are extremely confident
Hakkinen further opined that the competition between the two would be more intense in future, as they are soaring in confidence after their recent success this year, especially, Max Verstappen’s win spree.
“Max is feeling very confident,” Hakkinen said. “He has won five Grands Prix this year and is leading the World Championship. He made such a great start, and was not going to give up the position to Lewis very easily,” he added.
“Particularly at such a fast corner which then leads into a complex of three corners – Maggotts, Becketts and Chapel – where overtaking is not really possible.”
“Lewis is equally confident in himself and his car. He has achieved so much success, and has so much experience, which means he is very focused on the win, and to gaining track position over Max.
“When I saw them touch I stood up and thought ‘Oh My God’ because that is such a high-speed corner. It’s very fast and not one at which you want to go off.
“I am very glad that Max was unhurt, and it is another sign of just how strong these cars are and the fantastic work which the FIA does to make sure you can walk away from that kind of impact. At 51G, it is the kind of impact that would not have been easy to survive in the past.”
Though Hakkinen also believes that both drivers will now be extremely cautious after the incident, as they wouldn’t want to jeopardize their championship-winning prospects this year.
“This accident will really put some fire between these guys and their battle for the World Championship. Neither of them will want to repeat that accident, but they will be even more determined not to lift off the throttle the next time they are in this kind of close battle. We are going to see them fight hard for the rest of the season. It’s going to be really fascinating.”