Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen analysed by Coulthard
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Red Bull’s Christan Horner was furious with the FIA stewards after they controversially refused to punish Lewis Hamilton after his near-miss with Max Verstappen on Turn 7 at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The two title contenders appeared to touch as Verstappen lunged up the inside of Turn 7 to try and take the lead as Hamilton was forced onto the run-off area.
Hamilton insisted he was ‘pushed off track’ by Verstappen and was allowed to hold on to the lead despite the Dutchman and Red Bull’s fury.
Red Bull’s Verstappen was heard shouting on the radio that Hamilton ‘needs to give that back’ but the FIA stewards deemed an investigation into the incident was not required.
“We are a little bit shocked at that because apparently Lewis gave his advantage back, which we have failed to see yet,”Horner told Sky Sport F1.
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“It’s a total lack of consistency.
“We’ve got to focus on the race now and do it the hard way. The race director made it very clear before the race you have to stay in the white lines, Max did that but Lewis didn’t.”
Sky F1 claimed Mercedes’ stance on the incident was that Hamilton had to take evasive action because of Verstappen’s lunge.
Former F1 champion Jenson Button agreed with Mercedes’ defence but suggested the FIA have been inconsistent with their rulings.
He told Sky Sports: “It was a very late lunge but it was always going to happen, Lewis knew he was coming. He pushed Lewis off the track – I guess – but he stayed on the track.
“I’m struggling to understand the regulations right now because obviously in Brazil there was no penalty, but they both drove off the circuit. Max stayed on the track this time.”
Nico Rosberg also agreed with the stewards’ decision, adding: “It’s so difficult. I think it’s OK what they’ve done. Max was a little bit too lungy and too aggressive, forcing Lewis out too strongly, even though he had a right to the corner there.
“Then I would also say Lewis didn’t give back everything that he gained.”
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