Verstappen: Jeddah penalty unfair relative to Brazil precedent


Max Verstappen is at a loss to understand the stewards' logic behind the five-second penalty he received in Jeddah given that his similar maneuver in Brazil had gone unpunished.

Among the many contentious points sparked by last weekend's chaotic Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was the tussle on lap 37 between the Red Bull driver and Lewis Hamilton.

Hamilton drew along his rival as the pair barreled down to the first corner but Verstappen, like in Brazil when the duo spared at Turn 4, offered a staunch defense and ran himself and his rival wide.

Both drivers left the track, but the Dutchman was handed a five-second time penalty for gaining an advantage.

Addressing the incident after the race, Verstappen was perplexed that a similar move in Brazil "was fine and now suddenly I get a penalty for it."

"Of course, he had the run, a bit like Brazil, and of course I braked late, and I think I got a little bit offline at one point," he added

"I had a moment, so I went wide, but he also didn’t make the corner so we both basically missed the corner, and I don’t think it’s fair to then just say that I get a penalty but, yeah, it is what it is.

"I find it interesting that I am the one who gets the penalty when both of us ran outside of the white lines. In Brazil it was fine and now suddenly I get a penalty for it."

Despite the frustrating outcome of the stewards' decision, upon which was added a 10-second sanction for "erratic" driving when Verstappen slowed on the back straight and was hit by Hamilton, the Red Bull driver preferred to put the evening's events in the rear view mirror and move on.

"You could clearly see both didn’t make the corner, but it’s fine. I also don’t really spend too much time on it. We have to move forward," he said.

"We’re equal on points now and I think that’s really exciting, of course, for the whole championship and Formula 1 in general.

"But I said it earlier on my in-lap, I think lately we’re talking more about white lines and penalties than actually proper Formula 1 racing and that’s, I think, a little bit of a shame."

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