Verstappen: If that pass isn’t allowed, what’s the point in being in F1?

Spielberg, Austria

Austrian Grand Prix – Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen says that he didn’t view his overtake on Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc as anything untoward.

The Dutch driver took a hugely popular win on the third last lap in Austria, overtaking Charles Leclerc up the inside into Turn 3 before coming home almost three seconds clear.

However, the stewards have announced that they will investigate the pass which saw the two cars bash wheels at the apex of the corner before Leclerc ran off track on the outside.

The decision regarding the incident will be discussed with both drivers Sunday evening, but Verstappen was unapologetic afterwards: “It’s hard racing, otherwise we have to stay home. If those things aren’t allowed in racing, what’s the point in being in Formula 1?”

Having fallen down from P2 to P7 on the opening lap after a bad start, Verstappen explained that he had encountered anti-stall that led to him bogging down off the line: “After the start, I thought the race was over. I had some anti-stall. We set the clutch too aggressively but, from then on, I was a little bit limited after a flat spot from Lap 1. But we stayed out quite long and once we came out again on the Hards, we had great pace. We were looking after the tyres initially to look after the tyres and settling in. We started to then overtake the cars ahead and the car really came alive.”

Asked about when he started thinking about victory being possible, he said: “Once I got past Valtteri, I knew the pace would let me have a go at it. You never know though, so I just kept pushing really hard and we did it with a few laps to go. The whole weekend, the team have been working really well and a big thank you to them and also to Honda. They’ve not had an easy run in the past but today is incredible.”

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Thomas Maher

Co-owner, Chief Editor and a journalist for - Ireland's only accredited F1 & Formula E website.

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