Verstappen vs Ocon: History means more to F1 clash than meets the eye?
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Posted By: Editor   |  12 Nov 2018   |  1:06 pm GMT  |  546 comments

Max Verstappen and Esteban Ocon came to blows at the Brazilian Grand Prix after a race-defining clash between the two drivers half-way through the race.

Having done all the hard work, taken the lead of the race from Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton only a couple of laps earlier, Verstappen found himself under unexpected pressure from Ocon, who had already been lapped.

Ocon – a Mercedes junior driver in a Mercedes-powered car – was on fresh supersoft tyres and driving a car which had been threatening to top the speeds charts all weekend.

With a strong exit from the final corner, Ocon enjoyed a speed advantage over the Dutchman as they crossed the line to start lap 44. Ocon tried to drive around the outside of Verstappen into turn one, before attempting a pass on the inside of turn two.

With Verstappen not anticipating a move, the Red Bull driver took a normal racing line into turn two, and the pair came together, spinning them both off the circuit.

Damage was done to both cars, but both could continue, albeit with Verstappen down to second and five seconds behind Hamilton and with Ocon having to serve a ten-second stop & go penalty.

Verstappen went on to close the gap to Hamilton, but the damage was already done, and the Mercedes driver held on to take his tenth win of the season.

Visibly frustrated, Verstappen made his way to the FIA weigh bridge garage and confronted Ocon, pushing him three times before storming off.  He also made a swift exit from the podium celebrations after picking up his second place trophy.


When asked by Motorsport.com to explain the post-race shoving, Verstappen said: “I don’t really have lots to comment on that, except that he was being a p***y.”

“We had a great car today,” added Verstappen after the race. “I’m very happy with that, the strategy was also working really well. We could do our own pace until I got taken out.

“I think a penalty says enough. If the stewards give him a penalty you know who was wrong in that situation.

“You can easily say afterwards that I have much more to lose than him but I’m just trying to do my race.

“Suddenly a backmarker is trying to race you and taking a stupid risk to dive inside. What can I do about it?

“The penalty for me is that I lost the victory but hopefully in 15 years time we can laugh about it.”

Ocon defended himself afterwards, and said that his old Formula Three rival was “not professional” and “has always been the same”.

“The rules say you are allowed to unlap yourself if you’re faster,” said Ocon. “That’s what I did on the second lap. I still saw I had massive pace. I went around the outside of him. That’s the same move I did on Fernando, the same move I did on many other drivers.”

“But what I’m really surprised is the behaviour of Max coming into the scales. The FIA having to stop him being violent, pushing me and wanting to punch me. That is not professional.

“[But] I’m used to the fights with Max. He’s always been the same. It goes back a few years.”

Both drivers were summoned to the stewards after their altercation following the race, and the pair were seen shaking hands in the paddock afterwards.

However, Verstappen was found to be in breach of FIA International Sporting Code and “is required to perform two days of public service at the direction of the FIA within six months of the incident.”

Fanning the conspiracy theory claims was Red Bull’s Motorsport Advisor Helmut Marko, who failed to ignore the fact that Ocon is a Mercedes junior driver, and believes that he has been promised a Mercedes seat for 2020.

“A Mercedes driver, who is promised a seat for 2020, that crashes into the leading car — unbelievable,” Marko told Germany’s Motorsport-Magazin. “They should have told him ‘this is the leader, he has new tyres, don’t attack him.’

“And then this idiot gets a ten-second penalty. I would have expected a race ban.”

On BBC 5 Live former F1 driver Jolyon Palmer also said that the only logical conclusion was that Ocon’s Mercedes allegiance had played a part in what he described as one of the worst pieces of driving he had seen in F1.

However, many believed that this was merely a continuation of their rivalry in the junior categories.

They raced against each other in karting and were front-runners in FIA Formula 3, with Ocon taking the 2014 title ahead of Verstappen. While Verstappen has a shot at winning races and races and titles with Red Bull, Ocon faces a frustrating 2019 season on the sidelines.

“There is a lot of history between those drivers,” Horner said, attempting to play down the incident.

“It goes right back to karting. We don’t know what words were exchanged between them. We don’t condone violence but you have to understand emotions – you’ve had a victory taken away from you and they are running high.

“Of course there is a human reaction in these competitive animals. Emotions occasionally boil over.”

Whether Ocon has a seat at Mercedes in 2020 lined up, replacing Bottas, or not, Mercedes senior management will be dismayed by what happened in Brazil, coming on top of the clashes with his Force India team mate Perez at Spa and Baku last year.

Verstappen should undoubtedly have handled the situation on track and afterwards differently, but it’s a real no-no for a back marker to take out the leader of a Grand Prix and raises questions about his in race decision-making.

By: Luke Murphy and James Allen

All images: Motorsport Images

Who do you think was to blame for the incident? Leave your thoughts in the section below.

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1

I wonder if max would have pushed Fernando Alonso the same, if it was him involved in this incident? I doubt it, as we all know what the outcome would be, as for the pushes, I am sure if anyone did this aggressively to someone in the street, especially multiple times, surely it is assault? I think max needs to grow up, and stop doing stupid things, he could be a decent driver and good all rounder, but doing things like this, lets everyone down, especially young kids who no doubt are watching, and as the punishment is barely anything at all, these young kids will start to believe this kind of behaviour is acceptable, and it is not, basically, max pushing ocon was disgusting, as for the incident, since when are you not allowed to unlap yourself? lewis hit it on the head, verstappen had more to lose, and he lost it, the race win!

2

Mad Max is a spoiled brat full of a sense of entitlement. He is a disgrace to F1 and Red Bull. What he did constitutes an assault and battery. And it wasn’t in the heat of the moment. He did it with malice aforethought. Two days of community service is a joke. He needs mandatory anger management training and he needs to grow up quickly or be banned before does anything stupider.

3

Reading through some of the comments here it’s quite amazing how so many people are blaming Verstappen for this. This just shows how little these so called F1 fans know about what they’re watching. This all happened in a fraction of a second and Ocon was lapped, he can unlap himself yes, but he cannot interfere with the leaders pace while doing so, after Ocon had not made the move happen at T1 Verstappen saw this and knew the apex was his and that it what his focus was on, Ocon should not have been there, even if Max had seen the car there and gave him space that would have cost him time all the way to T4 and Ocon was still liable for a penalty for that. It’s ridiculous anybody is in disagreement with this!

4

I’m disappointed by TV hosts and FIA personnel, like C.Whiting, all bashing Ocon. the do value the leader’s position, but they should also know better.
The rules don’t forbid unlapping and also mid field and back marker teams fight or points and positions in the championship.
To me it was clearly Verstappens fault and this is for a few reasons.

a) It was Verstappen who shut the door and left no space to the opponent. Ocon had nowhere to go, other than risking to understeer into the side of Verstappen when hitting the brakes. Verstappen took the “racing line” well knowing his opponent was beside him, effectively forcing Ocon off track.

b) Verstappen shut the door on another car without defending a position. This is basically blue flags reversed. Backmarkers are required to let faster people pass, because they’re not fighting with them for position. In this situation the leader should have been required to let the faster car pass, because they were not fighting for position.

c) Verstappens move was also unnecessary, because he hasn’t been held up by Ocon.

d) Ocons move was neither overly optimistic, nor rude, nor did he push Verstappen off track, nor was it in a dangerous spot, nor was it a surprise, he had his car under control the whole time, he was clearly seconds faster.

I can’t understand why Ocon got a penalty for causing a collision, while behaving perfectly. Other than some imaginary respect for a race leader, that cannot be found anywhere in the rule books.

I’m very disappointed by the media and officials, not having the guts to defend a designated F1 reject’s driving against their designated next generation super star.

5

A. Ocon was not Verstappens opponent.
B. Are you creating your own rules here?
C. What move? Taking the apex of T2 like every other lap?
D. Ocon was interfering with the leaders pace, a car he was not racing.

Like you say, he was much faster at that time. So he could have easily breezed past on the straight towards T4 with out costing the leader any time.

Understand yet?

6

Max and Ocon need to watch the Ricciardo/Vettel battle in the race.

Maybe they’d learn how driving wheel-to-wheel should be done.

7

Lewis Hamilton was spot on when speaking to Max just after the race… Max had MUCH more to LOSE than Ocon.. He clearly knew Ocon was a back marker who had just pitted & was on fresh super soft tyres so he should definitely have been a lot SMARTER & just let Ocon pass & unlap himself which he is WELL within his rights to do… Rather than trying to “RACE HIM AGGRESSIVELY” as if it was Hamilton who was trying to get past him for position!!!

& his conduct AFTER the race also showed his inflated ego & immaturity as a racer too!!! Purposely trying to FIND Ocon after the race & THEN pushing him around was BANG out of order so 2 days of “community service” is an absolute joke in my view!!!

He IS a talented driver & has shown this on MANY occasions on track but he needs to understand that he’s got thousands & THOUSANDS of supporters from all around the world now paying good money to get seats in the grandstands to cheer him on & watch him race on a weekend (which he clearly LOVES!!!)

However… he’s also got to realise that along with the huge paycheque he gets he’s also become a ROLE MODEL especially to young kids so getting VIOLENT off track is absolutely appalling behaviour which he should be DEEPLY ASHAMED OF!!!

& calling Ocon a P***Y for NOT engaging in a shameful brawl goes to show which of the TWO young drivers clearly has the most MATURITY!!!

I’ve been an F1 fan for MANY years now & have seen drivers lose their cool a bit post race in my time (9 times outa 10 as SOON as the race has finished as they’ve JUST got out of their cars in close proximity to each other, still suited up & still wearing their helmets!!) but what makes Verstappens outburst WORSE than prior incidents (in my personal opinion!!!) is that the incident happened on lap 44 of 71 & he quite brazenly TOLD his team “I’d better not see him in the paddock!!!” as her was driving BACK to “parc ferme” post race so Christian Horner & the rest of the team were FULLY AWARE of his mood, mind set AND his intentions yet NONE of the Red Bull racing team did anything to stop him AT ALL!!!!

As ALL F1 fans know (even my 4 year old niece!!) when u come 1st 2nd or 3rd at least PART of ur team are there waiting to congratulate you yet when Max went to FIND Ocon… I didn’t see Christian Horner or even ONE Red Bull team member shadowing Max to keep him in check so I basically see that as them giving him the “green light” to go & do whatever he WANTED to instead of being there to try & calm him down & diffuse the situation which clearly they SHOULD have but didn’t!!!

& it unfortunately reminds me of VETTELS era at Red Bull aswell where they allowed him & his ego to become SUPER inflated & treated him as if he was the BEST driver on track & basically like the rules “didn’t apply” to him which for a long time created an arrogant MONSTER which I unfortunately see Max becoming in the VERY near future if they don’t nip it in the bud & do it SOON!!! We have ONE race left in the 2018 season which will end in Abu Dhabi & I for one would like to see this season end on a HIGH & not tarnished by Max’s unprofessional actions in Brazil!!!

8

I say let this alone. It was an on track clash between two very young drivers who are still growing up…

9

Overtake that was doomed to fail:

https://youtu.be/5y324nCCCLM

10

Wow just saw the Ocon onboard from pit stop to crash, with radio messages.

100% Verstappen Fault.

Can’t believe stewards, Marko or Max reactions, they guilty.

11

If Max had any racecraft he would have let Ocon past then slot in behind for a nice tow and some fast easy laps, sadly the red mist took over.

12

it is terrible how most of the media are willing to forgive anything to VER just because think is the “next senna” that kid is not a champion and will never be with that attitude, he sooner will be kill or will kill someone. . . VER feels entitled to do anything he wants WHY? until now he hasn’t show to be mature enough to be in F1, maybe he has the talent, but he demonstrates again and again why it was a mistake to bring him that early.

I know this comment will not be approve, shame on you JA.

13

*What do the media forgive VER? I think he had quiet his share, deserved or not.
* Why do some never forgive VER. He can do 6 good races and 1 less (his fault or not) and people start again about immature, attitude, entitled….
* Does OCO have such a good track record? Is he forgiven by the media? Don’t hear about that in this discussion.
Conclusion: your post is BS.

14

Good post!

Verstappen certainly had his share of unforgiving media. At the start of his F1 career he could do no wrong, but that all changed the first half of this season. The way he responded on track was brilliant though. I would have been crying myself asleep after the roast he got, but he just drove the wheels of the RB (in an good way).

Ocon is still in the phase where he can do no wrong. The lovey-dovey stuff with Will Buxton is especially painful. But that will change, if he ever gets drive at Mercedes. (probably not).

15

Rejoice, my friend! This is the place where people share their Verstappen trauma. Hundreds have gone before you. (But for some reason they all think their pain is unique).

16

???

17

If they’d been on the same lap, wouldn’t we be saying that Verstappen didn’t leave room for Ocon even though he knew he was there and trying to pass? OK perhaps Ocon shouldn’t have risked taking out a leading car from his position on the previous lap, and that’s how the stewards ruled – fair enough – but Verstappen made a stupid mistake in fighting him. Having decided, wrongly, to overtake, I think Ocon positioned his car in exactly the right place for an overtake at that corner, and Verstappen ran him off the road.

18

When and what did Vettel do for his punishment for Baku? It was supposed to be something for young driver education, but I never heard a peep.

19

Not happy with this article…substandard and not well documented! Clearly,Max the crashmaster was not taken out by Ocon. Max has taken himself out by HITTING Ocon. It is incredible that 90% of comments are in Max’s favor citing lapping-unlapping,leader-backmarker and rubbish like that.Incredible!!

20

Clearly, you don’t understand logic.

21

Or you are with the 10% that are wrong, but you can not take that.

22
søren christensen

@Kimmy Your eyes must be out of order..

23

Max has some growing up to do still… By closing the door at Turn 2, he made sure Ocon had nowhere to go.

T1 was the safest place to overtake and Ocon could only go on the outside. (Baku anyone?)

The championship could be interesting if both Max and Ocon are front runners in 2020. Fingers crossed.

24
søren christensen

I for one am 100% for Max Verstappen in this case. The clumsy move from Ocon, who – a full lap behind – absolutely needed to prove “he was faster” was so amateurish, that he should have been kicked out of the race proper. People trying to find excuses for Ocons strange behavior are doing this only because, they suffer from so much bias towards Verstappen, they can not accept, Ocon was at fault.

To be robbed a victory after a fantastic showing of skills like Verstappen did the whole race, must have been terrible for the Dutchman. And that Ocon got away with a bit of shoving was very lucky indeed. A punch in the smug face would have been appropriate

Some (Ocon fans) claim Verstappen should have/ could have looked in the mirrors and expected Ocon would be there, and let him through.

Absolutely not – the blame is fully on the lapped driver, who should respect, that the leader must not be challenged, when You are 1 lap down!

Ocon behaved childish, and very unprofessional. Perhaps, he should have had more of the “Jos treatment” when growing up – like young Verstappen had

25

A punch in the smug face

Surprised by that one Søren.

I dont agree with you at all, and I really like Verstappen.

26
søren christensen

Not that, I personally advocate any form of violence – of course not.

I was trying to express, how a gutted Max V must have felt being robbed of a certain victory after a truly great race. And given the history of “loose hands” in the Verstappen family, I think Ocon got away very lucky.

In such a competitive environment, with a Verstappen always on the edge, and having management in his ears cheering him up, it would have (not should have) been expected, we had seen a Senna/Irvine scene, at least.

27

Yup. Well said. The kid has learned a lot. But in this world he gets a community service for a few gentle shoves (WTF??). And you only get one ‘like’ for making sense.

28

Max is way out of order. F1 is racing an di don’t care who is leading. It should be racing. The guys lower down the ranks should be racing all the way.

Secondly it was clear that Max is becoming a super idiot himself. He should have thought better and calmly and give Occon space. Racing is about using your wits and sensibilities in difficult moments. Max is too arrogant and this world needs less arrogance and more decency for younger children aspiring to become racers. I don’t like max at all. His comments ‘I’m a winner’, just says it all. He took himself out and lost the plot. He’s the super idiot.

My sympathy goes to Occon and cant wait to see him in a Mercedes soon.

29

For that action only Ocon deserves F1 seat next year. He went against status quo and demanded his place on the track. What’s wrong in that? Racing should happen even when you unlap yourself, and when racing you have to leave space for your competitor.

Most people are weak and afraid to go against Status Quo. I applaus Ocon for doing this. F… F1 and it’s pursuit of political correctness, family values, investor orientation, must have show. At that moment they were equal and Verstappen should have been punished for not leaving space.

People who will afraid Verstappen on track will never deserve to call a champion. Like Raikkonen in Japan.

30

JA – You Kinda Oversold It (again…)

Now, while I like this place, I am also conflicted about the site sometimes. It’s one of a handful I come to often to get my F1 info and JA , and the commenters, do have a lot to offer, but too many times the site makes silly journalistic mistakes. Like publishing branded content and not telling us up front but more often, making claims in a headline they don’t deliver on.

Case in point, this article. It would have been fine if they had not given us the carrot of telling us what is actually at the core of the spat between Ocon and Max.

Many commentators have mentioned there “is history between the two” and you ran with that. But the “history” you tell us about in the headline consist of a few generic quotes (that we would have seen on Sky already) two thirds into the article and then the fact about Ocon winning a junior title over Max…

How about someone actually find out what that history really is? Talk to people who where there at the karting and junior days, tell us the anecdotes, show us what the guys were like so we can actually understand what fueled this instead of just saying “history caused this spat”.

You likely can’t compete on F1 news, so analysis, portraits, history and investigative journalism is where it is – you know this, you just forgot when you headlined this piece. So, please either go easy on the headlines – or deliver what you promise.

All this in respect, as I said, there’s still a lot of good things to come here for.

31

So the free site is not to your liking sometimes. You have a great sense of entitlement to have everything your way…..

The standard of journalism on here is very high considering it’s free and has a need for some commercial sponsors to pay for the hosting, salary, etc. It’s the lazy, biased, and childish comments that are spoiling things, and you contribute to this quite often along these lines yourself…..

32

Even the title of the entire website is misleading these days, as it is no longer James Allen on F1…

So what is next: The paysite of the owner of this website motorsport.com or the alternative autosport.com?

33
søren christensen

Rubbish – You do know, that James Allen works for Motorsport.com? So, I do not find, that he is in particular dire straits for readers

34

Sadly most of the content on this site nowadays is not from JA. It’s noticeable that the style and quality of the content has changed since the site changed hands some time ago. We all miss him, but he probably received an offer to good to be true and is busy with a lot of other journalism jobs, so in a way it’s understandable.

35

JA is the head honcho of Motorsport.com that took over the running of this site…

36

I find it hard to comprehend the fact that Max defiantly refused to acknowledge Ocon may still be beside him and didn’t even bother to look to his right to make sure.
When you are preparing yourself to have your first driving lesson, FIA and local government Road Safety manuals warn potential drivers to ALWAYS check your blind-spot before you turn or change lanes.
When you do get into the driver’s seat, after telling you about the mechanics of how to drive the car, the first thing the Driver Trainer says to you as you are about to indicate and enter the road is … “Even if you can’t see a car in your mirror, look over your shoulder and check your blind-spot before you turn. Never trust the other driver to get out of your way”.

If Max had bothered to take a quick look to his right he would easily have seen past the slope in the side of his head rest that Ocon’s front wheel was a long way up on his inside.
Instead, Max simply (or arrogantly) ‘believed’ Ocon would have to back off because he was being lapped. Because of that mentality, Max was already looking ahead at the next left-hander and didn’t bother to leave enough racing room … just in case!
The rules state that the blame falls squarely on Ocon for taking out the leader … but as Lewis alluded to, Max had a duty of care to himself and his team to make sure the track was clear because he was the one who had everything to lose.

Max always says he “doesn’t care about other people” … so in true Max fashion, he didn’t look or leave any room … as a result, he and his team lost out terribly!

A mere .25 of a second of care and respect by quickly glancing to his right would have resulted in him staying wide, avoiding contact at all costs and coasting to an easy race win.
That win would have gained him mountains of positive, adoring feedback and respect after passing the top 4 cars, which were all experiencing some form of problem.
Now he’s having to endure this massive outpouring of distaste from millions of people around the world for his rage-fuelled violent actions after the race.
That rage could have easily been avoided with .25 secs of care and a glance to his right.

Read the revealingly pertinent comment below from Lucia (comment 64) about her daughter. She is an avid F1 fan who would love to one day race cars and is (was!) a Max fan.
Liberty has gone to great lengths to recognise that kids are the future of F1 and they’ve taken unprecedented steps to include them and accommodate for them both on and off the track.
It’s high time the FIA and the Stewards recognise that fact accordingly and set a proper example to kids by handing out appropriate penalties when drivers act like petulant 3 year-olds by acting-out violently or defiantly breaking the rules.
The FIA proudly shouts that they are all about road safety and making a great example … they certainly don’t act that way when “push comes to shove” on a race weekend!
(sorry … cheeky pun – but I couldn’t resist :))

37

Really, mirror, signal, manoeuvre in motor racing? 😂😂😂😂 You’ve clearly never raced…….

38

Well, Mr. D, perhaps it is appropriate to assume you think you have raced from your comment. It is most unfortunate that you have apparently not been taught by your instructors that “. . .it’s great to finish 1st, but 1st you have to finish. . .”

Just sayin’

39

Checking your blind spot before chopping off the front of the car beside you or barging them off the track is an example of what a clear thinking person with impeccable vision, reflexes, car control, respect and due care would do in that situation.
It sound like you are exactly like Max and his greatest inspiration – his infamous old man – obviously you don’t have the capacity or the self respect to comprehend those qualities.
Max openly and proudly states that he doesn’t give a stuff about anyone else and demonstrates it at every race weekend in one fashion or another.
He’s never had to pay for any damage to his own equipment because he’s a spoilt brat millionaire’s son and he’s never had to answer to the person whose car he just trashed because his old man would tell them to F*** OFF and threaten to FRACTURE THEIR SCULL like he has done before at a cart track!!!
Driving into people runs in the family … Jos’ has done it on track, ask Montoya for one example and he assaulted his ex-girlfriend by smashing his car into hers!
No wonder Max is the way he is … he even states that his old man is his counsellor and psychologist … bwaaahahahahahahahahaha!!!

If you do race PaulD, you must have a massive bank balance to pay for all of your car damage when you drive like a disrespectful prat … and your competitors must cringe every time you leave pit lane!

Or maybe you simply make daft comments for the sake of it because you spend lots of time at the local fun park for kiddies – driving dodgem cars at 15 kmh and believe you are a budding world champion.

As for your stab in the dark about me racing … I’ve only had 45 years experience in 3 different disciplines and NEVER had a crash that I caused by disrespectfully chopping a fellow competitor off without a glance to check if I was clear after a wheel to wheel battle into a corner!!!
And before you go down the path of saying I probably never win because of it … my trophy cabinets speak volumes!

40

@ Jack…you raise some interesting points but one in particular caught my attention. You state that the ‘rules lay the blame squarely on Ocon for taking out the leader’. This is totally new to me. Could you please post what that rule actually states and it’s nomenclature within the FIA Sporting and Racing rules and regulations. Look forward to your post response….

41

@kenneth … I have a query for you about the rules surrounding waving Blue Flags.
I’ve been having a squiz at the FIA rules and can’t find anything of substance regarding Blue Flags – other than under THE RACE – where it states that Blue Flags can be waved by a marshall when a car is leaving the pit lane, to warn them about cars approaching.
Can you help me with where I might find them?

My following comment / question is merely my assumption, not a statement of truth …
If Blue Flags are waved to inform ANY driver whenever ‘a car is approaching’ (presumably any faster car, not necessarily because they are on the lead lap and lapping a slower car), then why wasn’t a blue flag shown to Max to let him know Ocon was faster than him for a couple of laps on fresh tyres and was approaching him rapidly on the straight?
If Max had been shown a Blue Flag a few times on the preceding lap, maybe he would have had more information to consider and change his line into Turn 1 when Ocon tried to pass him, rather than taking the inside line, rolling out of the brakes and fighting hard for Turn 2.
In that instance, he would not have expected the faster lapped car to give him an unimpeded ‘right of passage’.
Interesting!

Cheers k

42

@kenneth … my bad. I shouldn’t have used the word “rules” in such a stand alone fashion.
What I meant was the “unwritten rules” which are expected to be adhered to by respectful, professional competitors.
The stewards have the last say on these things so really, it is a rule of sorts because it had to be clarified and adjudicated on for there to be a penalty imposed on a “guilty party”.
If the incident wasn’t considered to be breaking some form of rule or regulation, they can’t hand out a penalty for it.
Thanks for the question – sorry for the confusion.
Cheers k

43

@ Jack…many thanks for the response. I see where you’re coming from and agree with your summary. I still can’t quite reconcile the Ocon penalty. Watching the late posted video, shot from Ocon’s in car camera, makes it abundantly clear as to where Ocon had placed his car. As i said earlier, Verstappen must have known, either visually or intuitively, where Ocon was and he simply left no room. What was the catalyst for this? Well, it’s appears to be all rather simple. Verstappen was not going to let Ocon past, no matter what happened. He cannot accept that. He doesn’t care what happens.

44

You’d think such an incident (like Baku with Dan) might make Max re-evaluate his driving style and ethics on track, that maybe it’s not such a great idea to force people off the track and forcibly close the door to gain positions. I feel this particular incident was a brain fade on Max’s part who is just used to people not fighting him lest they risk having their car broken (because he WILL drive into you) and similar incidents in the past usually coming out favourably for him through sheer luck.

I think Ocon could have take a bit more care and he wasn’t quite enough alongside of Max into turn 2 to be afforded the car width of space as rules stipulate but the fact he was right alongside Max into turn 1 would beg that you be careful entering turn 2, be sporting and leave some space. Running a back marker you are lapping off the track is just as stupid as hitting the race leader when you are already 2 laps down…

45

“the fact he was right alongside Max into turn 1”

In fact he was in front. Max cannot say that he didn’t see him. He just thought he’d somehow disappear by turn 2. Stupid.

Equally stupid, in my opinion, is the Marko stuff about Ocon being a Mercedes driver. That’s not how it works in F1, and Marko is a disgrace to suggest it. And I really thought Palmer was a bit smarter than to buy into that stuff.

46

Why and who was responsible for the blue flags?

I have a vague reminiscence of this but cant really remember and google is being though on me.

Anyone?

47

Max is renown for driving with “his elbows out”. Many times this season he has been quoted as saying that he can go in deeper with the likes of Hamilton / Vettel as they have more to lose and will ultimately back off when pushed. Hamilton has backed out on occasion this season and yet the Hamilton from 10 years ago would have defended and tangled. Lessons to be learned here with the biggest being its not always the fastest driver who wins. Max is a great talent but he needs to address his flaws and certainly going hot tempered after Ocon in the weighing room not a good move. I haven’t noticed anyone who Max has punted off chasing off after him to assault him and the list is long.

48

The overtake that Ocon was attempting to make, was doomed to fail and he knew that when they both went into the first corner. Max came out in front and at that point Ocon was in his blindspot at the right.

He turned in because he never expected Ocon to follow through on his attempt that already failed, since he was the raceleader.

To my opinion, he was totally entitled to expect Ocon to yield because of the simple fact that you do not fight the raceleader when you are a backmarker.

Ocon didn’t, hence the outcome.

Why did Max not let Ocon pass at that point? Ocon came from too far away to pass Max without him having to lower his normal cornering speed and with Ocon showing up in the Senna S, he would have had a loss of downforce, and speed on the straight which would not have been nescessary given the fact Ocon could have passed him on the straight with ease.

I don’t believe Ocon intentionally took Max out, or was asked to but it would not surprise me if he was asked to overtake and then hold up Max for Lewis to close in. Since there is no proof of that, i’m fine to go for a shortcircuited brain in Ocons head.

If you cannot understand that a driver, that was just taken out of the lead by a backmarker, being angry, then you have no clue whatsoever about competitiveness.

Frankly, I was impressed that Max did not try to park his helmet between Ocons teeth when Ocon smiled at him and told Max that “he was faster” without even expressing some kind of sympathy.

I see it as a sign of maturity that he didn’t hit him but gave him just some pushes. If i look around me on the highway on my daily trips to work, I see a lot worse behavior from men and women twice Max age.

Someone noticed that “if there is a collision, and Max is involved, he is guaranteed to be the one guilty of it”.

I would like to rephrase the last part to “he is guaranteed to be blamed for it”, because that is the reality here, even if stewards decide otherwise.

I really can’t get what all the whining is about. Lots of people moaning about F1 lacking passion and F1 offering processional races and now that we have one driver that breaks with that, the same people moan about Max being petulant and showing immature behavior by confronting Ocon.

Frankly, I feel that a lot of fans do not deserve a once-in-a-livetime driver like Max.

49

@ Bonesoup….I really think that you should broaden your horizons and view the incident from different angles. Verstappen would have to be blind not to know that Ocon was right up there alongside.IMO he knew exactly where Ocon was. Verstappen should’ve got the same penalty as Ocon for what he did. Either that or deem it a racing incident.

50
søren christensen

Well said – Max V is the kind of driver, who does not accept defeat, also not driving inferior material to Ferrari and MB. While many of the current drivers are colorless also rans, he fights his soul out, and is fantastic to watch on track. That certain victory in Brazil was taken from him by a childish Ocon, who deserved a lot more than a couple of shovings

51

@ Soren christenson You’ve contracted the Aveli disease.

52

Søren

I hope you haven’t got kids😏

53

Why did Red Bull favour this overhyped teen when, with a bit of work, they could have kept Daniel Ricciardo, who is just as fast and 10 times more mature and likeable? What a waste.

54

Another armchair expert. Theyre 15-4 in quali this year so if you got an iota of brain left, do the math. Still think Dan is just as fast. He’s blown away by Max despite his poor start to the season.

55

Max is also ahead in Crashes, Spins, Shoves and Dummy Spits about 15-4

56

they could have kept Daniel Ricciardo

@Ron Morgans

To be fair Ron, Red Bull did want to keep Daniel Ricciardo! It was Daniel who showed them what’s what when he flounced off to Renault…..

57

C63

I think choosing to leave RB after 11 years for a new challenge at Renault is probably a better way to put it don’t you think?

58

To be fair C63, while Redbull were interested in keeping Daniel, it was clear that 1/ they were never going to pay him the same money as Max (which I think it would be fair for DR to ask for as his performances have been just as good) 2/ The team (Horner and DM) are all blinded by the hype that has MV emulating all the multiple world champion drivers (which he may do) but overlooking that DR is at this point in time, just as capable (with slightly less time on his side) and 3/ The Honda is still a lemon and I won’t be surprised if DR has a car capable of battling and probably beating Max next season. I thought McLaren had played a master stroke when they switched to Honda and look how that played out… The Toro Rosso experiment hasn’t sold the switch to me. They averaged 13th position on the grid and average finish of 12th. Renault was slightly ahead with 10th and 9th (quali/race) and Newey will no doubt add some competitiveness above the Toro Rosso, but despite the promise of competitiveness, I doubt it and I think DR couldn’t see it either.

Only history will show if these were the right moves, but it will be interesting to watch nonetheless.

I take exception to the idea that DR could “flounce” anywhere 🙂

59

The Honda is still a lemon and I won’t be surprised if DR has a car capable of battling and probably beating Max next season. I thought McLaren had played a master stroke when they switched to Honda and look how that played out…

Honda may have had the advantage of 1 year free development when they entered F1, but they also had the disadvantage of about least 3 years less development time, as all the other manufacturers started working as soon as the regulations were clear enough and Honda committed much later (2013?). For that reason alone, Honda was doomed to be behind from the start, but they also took a huge conceptual bet with a very small turbo inside the V, that they had to reverse. So they had to build a completely new engine, basically losing them 2 more years.

Now as the law of diminishing returns states, the closer everybody comes to the regulation’s limits, the less progress they will make with their efforts, so the longer the regulations stay stable, the closer everybody will get.

We have seen that Honda has made a great progress in 4 years from getting lapped to running in Q3, despite providing the engine to mid field teams (Let’s face it, McLaren was not top team for several years and it wasn’t just Hondas fault. They had 2 rough years mit Mercedes losing them Jenson Button, they had a rough year with Renault in 2018). It seems as if Honda is now almost as good as Renault and the trend looks pretty much towards passing Renault, wo seem to have plateaued a bit. Given 2 years with Red Bull they might very much catch up with Ferrari and Mercedes, but unfortunately every time everyone is closing the gap, which takes about 5 years in F1, there will be a huge regulation change which stretches the field, of course with the big teams coming out on top, as they are the ones who can master new regulations the quickest.

60

@ Marbles….C63 only used that term to goad the Ricciardo supporters. Expect nothing less.

61

Because you are wrong and Ricciardo is in no way as fast, which has started to become obvious at the end of 2016 already. Actually it would be much easier for Red Bull to work on Max’s maturity, I don’t know why they don’t even consider it though…

62

Actually it would be much easier for Red Bull to work on Max’s maturity

HAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA… really? who is mature enough in RB organization to work with VER? who? please, those guys are made for each other, please, come on…. be serious now…

VER “might” be faster than RIC, but will NEVER be champion if keeps hitting everyone, at some point other drivers will start doing what OCO did, show him that he can be hit if don’t respect them, and it will be ok, I’m with OCO 100% specially after watching on board video, and MAX said that OCO mocks him and that’s why he lose his temper lol , so PER and MAG can also do that don’t you think? even RIC next year can play that card if he likes, constantly harass VER so he make mistakes like Brazil’s one….

63

The youngest this and that is always a good selling point. Just not to upset Jos, Max is a top-notch driver no doubt

64

RIC just as fast as Max? You sure you watched F1 last 2 years?

65

Really? I won’t argue the “more mature” (although DR punching walls is hardly a testament to maturity), but “just as fast” is debatable at our level, and RB have the data to answer that one unequivocally….

As for “more likeable” it depends on who you talk to. There’s a whole legion of fans out there that love Max, and if the visible orange at races this year is any indication, they outnumber the DR fans by some margin….

66

@ Redline….punching a hole in the wall!!! Did anyone ever see it? Was it ever confirmed by anyone apart from Horner? Has Ricciardo ever admitted doing it? Or was it blown up by Horner who was taking a cheap shot and Ricciardo?

67

@Kenneth. You are right that there is no proof, but I didn’t see any denials from DR either. In any case, even if he did, I personally see no issue with it – at least he didn’t punch Horner or Marko, and I imagine the temptation would be strong…!

68

@ Redline…yes, what a great idea. I’m sure that it’s crossed his mind at various times but being a gentleman he has desisted!!! On the ‘punched wall’ comment by Horner i still feel that it was a very cheap shot. I’m surprised that none of the media have actually pushed it as well? Not like the Brits to miss an opportunity slag a colonial off hahahaah. It’s just not cricket.

69

I wouldn’t read too much into the orange fan representation. Take a look at some of Max’s links to booking agencies and how these grandstands are booked and filled. Yes, they are Max fans, but the placement of them all in a particular grandstand is a strategy that helps his self promotion and also offers fans a chance to hang out with other fans. I’m not saying it is dodgy, but it is a paid promotional strategy. If you jammed all the DR fans or any other driver for that matter, into specific grandstands I’m sure you would see a similar phenomenon over time.

Good luck to him/his PR team for identifying the opportunity though.

As far as Ricciardo vs Verstappen this season, they both have 2 wins a piece and Ricciardo has scored 2 poles over Max 0. The points favour Max but DR has had twice as many retirements (8!) They are well matched teammates, it’s just the hype that makes people want to think Max is much better or faster. I don’t think the stats definitively show us who is the fastest, they are both pretty damn good. The years ahead will tell a clearer picture.

70

In the 10 races they both finished, VER outscored RIC 7 times…

71

@Marbles – fair point about the fan placement – I had no idea. Its certainly an effective ploy, as the concentration of orange does catch the eye.

With regards to who is quicker, I have always thought they are evenly matched, with MV possibly having a slight edge on pace, and DR better race-craft. However RB have all the data, and will no doubt know the answer to that question.

As for the years ahead giving a clear picture – I fear not unfortunately. It will be hard to tell in different cars, and can only hope that Renault are able to give DR a car worthy of his talents.

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