Kevin Magnussen has played down his contentious radio message regarding Lewis Hamilton in the Spanish Grand Prix as just a “heat of the moment” outburst.
Battling for sixth position, with Hamilton having started on medium tyres and everyone else on softs, Magnussen hit the side of the Mercedes and he went off into the gravel, dropping to the back of the field.
The Dane was unable to recover in terms of making much headway back through the order, eventually finishing 17th whereas Hamilton worked his way up to fifth after an early pit-stop.
A tough Sunday in Spain but there's a new opportunity this week!
— Haas F1 Team (@HaasF1Team) May 23, 2022
After the collision occurred, both drivers inevitably took to their team radio with Magnussen telling Haas that “Lewis knew what he was doing there – he rammed me”.
If anything, from the outside it looked as though Magnussen had been more at fault, although the stewards took no action and adjudged it to be a racing incident.
Now the 29-year-old, who is back in the series this season after a one-year break, has admitted his words had merely been a typical case of an F1 driver instantly going on the defensive in such a scenario.
Saying it was “nothing”, Magnussen told reporters: “It was just in the heat of the moment. You say whatever you say and then you go and look at it, and it’s often a different story.
“You’re always p***ed off in the heat of the moment but I’ll go and watch it again, see what happens and then move on.”
The incident occurred with Magnussen on the outside and trying to overtake. Hamilton said after the race Magnussen “came out of nowhere and hit me”.
The Briton added: “He came from behind and then hit the side of my car. I can’t say anything about it – it is what it is.”
Haas were the only team not to introduce any upgrades in Barcelona but it did not appear to inconvenience them in qualifying especially, with both cars starting in the top 10. However, they left the circuit without increasing their points total.
“The pace of the car was good this weekend,” added Magnussen, whose team-mate Mick Schumacher slipped down the order to finish 14th and felt hindered by the strategy the team had chosen for him.
“Despite everyone, most people, bringing upgrades we were able to stick with them. So there’s a lot of positives we will carry on to Monaco.”