Hamilton brands Verstappen’s driving ‘over the limit’

Henry Valantine
Lewis Hamilton next to Max Verstappen. Saudi Arabia December 2021.

Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen climb out of their cars after the race. Saudi Arabia December 2021.

Lewis Hamilton says Max Verstappen’s driving is “over the limit” after the way the Dutchman had defended against him in Saudi Arabia.

The two World Championship rivals were at loggerheads again in Jeddah, with Hamilton falling behind the Red Bull driver after the race had been red-flagged and losing track position.

After the second restart, he was forced wide by the Dutchman and both drivers ended up off track again when Hamilton tried to overtake around the outside of his rival at Turn 1.

But the main fall-out came when Verstappen was instructed to let Hamilton by after Red Bull opted to be cautious in believing he had defended illegally against the Mercedes.

Verstappen slowed down heading towards Turn 27, but Hamilton said he was not aware he would be allowed past and ultimately damaged his front wing when he went into the back of his slowing rival.

But after their other tussles on track also, the seven-time World Champion feels the Red Bull man’s driving is over the acceptable limits.

“For me, I really had to try and just keep my cool out there, which was really difficult to do,” Hamilton said to Sky Sports after the race. “I’ve raced a lot of drivers through my life. In the 28 years, I’ve come across a lot of different characters.

“There’s a few at the top which are kind of over the limit. Rules kind of don’t apply, or they don’t think of the rules.

“Today I just tried to do my talking on the track, keep the car in between the white lines and do it the right way.

“There were just so many different crazy curveballs that were sent, and then he obviously brake-tested, I think to try and get the DRS into the last corner to overtake me again back into Turn 1.

“There was the commotion, and I thought I lost my wing.”

This is not the first time the two drivers have crossed each other this season after collisions at Silverstone and Monza, along with Hamilton being forced wide at the start at Imola earlier in 2021.

Hamilton said he opted to stay away from any potential contact but feels it is starting to happen too often for his liking.


“He’s over the limit, for sure. I’ve avoided a collision on so many occasions with the guy,” said the Mercedes driver.

“I don’t always mind being the one that does that because you live to fight another day, which I obviously did.”

Hamilton went on to take victory in Jeddah and drew level with the Red Bull driver on points heading into the final race of the season.


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