“They’re not afraid to tangle at high speed” – Damon Hill advises Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen to watch themselves to prevent crashing into each other during the upcoming Belgian Grand Prix.
After Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen crashed on the opening lap at Silverstone, things have gone bitter between the two sides. The latter suffered a 51G crash and had to be immediately rushed to the local hospital.
Next up is Spa, one of the fastest circuits on the calendar, and Damon Hill feels it would be prudent for the duo to avoid crashing into each other, considering the dangers involved.
“It’s another fast circuit like Silverstone. They’ve already shown they’re not afraid to tangle at high speed, but Spa’s a whole other level of risk. It is a concern.
“I think if I was [FIA race director] Michael Masi, and I’d be in the drivers’ briefing for the weekend, I would be saying, ‘Listen guys, respect this place. It’s one of the fastest tracks we go to. We do not want to have any nasty episodes’.
“Of course, we have had some nasty episodes not so long ago, in the F2 races.
“There is extra risk, especially if it’s wet. They’ve had plenty of issues recently with the rain, but wet races at Spa are not for the faint-hearted.”
Lewis vs Max
— Formula 1 (@F1) August 23, 2021
Max Verstappen needs to win at Spa
The Red Bull driver was building a comfortable gap over Hamilton, but crashes in Silverstone and Hungary has led to him now trailing the reigning champion by 8 points.
With that in mind, Hill rightly feels Verstappen needs to win at Spa, most importantly ensuring Hamilton doesn’t win. And for this to happen, Red Bull’s speed advantage this season will need to translate on the track this weekend.
“He [Verstappen] will not be looking at this weekend and thinking ‘I need to score points’. He will be looking at this weekend thinking ‘I need to win again. I need to make sure Lewis doesn’t win’.
“That’s the only way he’s going to become world champion this year, so it’s high pressure.”