Formula 1’s youngest Grand Prix winner Max Verstappen has claimed that he doesn’t need to defend himself after his incident with Kimi Raikkonen last week in Hungary, despite receiving criticism from senior drivers.
The 18-year-old came under fire by the likes of Jenson Button and Sergio Perez, who both sided with Raikkonen after the Finn slammed for his aggressive defending during the Hungarian Grand Prix.
However, the FIA deemed the incident ‘firm but fair’ and the youngster avoided a penalty.
During the driver’s briefing in Hockenheim ahead of the German Grand Prix where Perez and Button aired their thoughts, Verstappen stood his ground and said he did nothing wrong.
“I don’t need to defend myself,” he told Sky Sports.” I’m confident I did nothing wrong.”
FIA race director Charlie Whiting also had his say on the matter, saying that he asked the FIA to review the incident on more than one occasion.
“A lot of people, including the teams concerned, felt that Max had moved more than once to defend his position, but we don’t believe he did,” Whiting said.
“There’s no actual rule about moving in the braking zone, although it’s a fairly undesirable thing according to most drivers. Obviously we will discuss it later [in the drivers’ meeting].
“I think it was on the edge of being fair. I asked the stewards to look at both incidents during the race and then I asked them to review them again after the race. But they felt it was firm but fair. ‘Robust defence’ I think was the judgement used.”