F1 clash between Hamilton and Verstappen ‘inevitable’ – Shovlin

Mercedes’ Andrew Shovlin believes an accident between Formula 1 title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen was “inevitable”.

F1 clash between Hamilton and Verstappen ‘inevitable’ – Shovlin

Hamilton and Verstappen’s first-lap collision at the British Grand Prix lit the fuse on their title battle, leading to fierce debate throughout F1 over who was to blame for the incident.

Hamilton was hit with a 10-second time penalty after the stewards deemed him to be predominantly to blame for causing the collision at Copse, which resulted in a 51G crash for Verstappen.

After serving the penalty in the pits, Hamilton was able to fight back to score his eighth Silverstone victory, cutting Verstappen’s advantage in the championship down to eight points in the process.

Hamilton and Verstappen have enjoyed a number of close wheel-to-wheel battles already this year, but Silverstone marked the first time they have made significant contact. The duo came close to touching a number of times on the opening lap in the lead-up to their collision, particularly at Brooklands as Verstappen defended the inside line.

Speaking after the race, Mercedes trackside engineering director Shovlin said that the aggression shown by Verstappen had previously forced Hamilton to back out of battles, meaning an incident such as this was inevitable.

“If you look at the sprint race, [and] if you look at the opening lap of the main race, Lewis was constantly having to back out of it to avoid a collision,” Shovlin said. “He was able to put his car into a position where he could stand his ground.

“Max drives aggressively and it's inevitable that, one day, we're going to get an accident. But we were pleased with the job Lewis did, and slightly disappointed to get the penalty but just relieved we could still win the race.”

Read Also:

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner fumed over the penalty handed out by the stewards, calling it “menial” after Hamilton was able to recover and win the race to cut Verstappen’s championship lead.

The incident has led to comparisons to previous crashes between title rivals, most famously involving Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost at Suzuka in 1989 and 1990.

Asked if he thought that a crash between Hamilton and Verstappen was inevitable, Mercedes F1 team boss Toto Wolff said it was “a situation you have all seen in the past when great drivers race each other”.

“When nobody is prepared to give in then this kind of situation can happen,” Wolff added after the race. “But for me it takes two to tango.

“This championship, it was always very intense, because we were fighting with everything we have in order to hold onto this championship, while knowing we are not as performing as Red Bull and Honda.

“Therefore, we’ve had big points losses in the past and today we scored big points. So that is always balancing itself out.”

shares
comments

Related video

McLaren set for boost in Ferrari F1 fight with Hungarian GP upgrades

Previous article

McLaren set for boost in Ferrari F1 fight with Hungarian GP upgrades

Next article

Masi: FIA has had to "tuck F1 drivers' elbows in" this year

Masi: FIA has had to "tuck F1 drivers' elbows in" this year
Load comments
Why unseen Hungary heroics could be Latifi's making Prime

Why unseen Hungary heroics could be Latifi's making

The chaotic start to the Hungarian GP set the scene for F1's less heralded drivers to make a name for themselves. Esteban Ocon did just that to win in fine style, but further down the order one driver was making his first visit to the points and - while the circumstances were fortunate - took full advantage of the chance presented to him

Hungarian Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Hungarian Grand Prix driver ratings

This was race that showcased the best and worst of Formula 1, producing a first time winner and a memorable comeback to a podium finish. Avoiding trouble at the start and astute strategy calls were key to success, but where some drivers took full advantage, others made key errors that cost them dearly

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The "heart-breaking" call that led to Ocon's Hungarian GP triumph Prime

The "heart-breaking" call that led to Ocon's Hungarian GP triumph

Set to restart the red-flagged Hungarian Grand Prix in second, Esteban Ocon had some doubts when he peeled into the pits to swap his intermediate tyres for slicks. But this "heart-breaking" call was vindicated in spectacular fashion as the Alpine driver staved off race-long pressure from Sebastian Vettel for a memorable maiden Formula 1 victory

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track' Prime

Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track'

Mercedes ended Friday practice at the Hungaroring with a clear gap to Red Bull thanks to Valtteri Bottas’s pace in topping FP2. But there are other reasons why the Black Arrows squad feels satisfied with its progress so far at a track many Formula 1 observers reckon favours Red Bull overall...

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021
How Red Bull endured its second car crash in two weeks Prime

How Red Bull endured its second car crash in two weeks

OPINION: Red Bull was justified to be upset that Lewis Hamilton survived his British GP clash with Max Verstappen and went on to win. But its attempts to lobby the FIA to reconsider the severity of Hamilton's in-race penalty were always likely to backfire, and have only succeeded in creating a PR disaster that will distract from its on-track efforts

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021
The ‘screaming’ F1 engine future that may not be out of reach Prime

The ‘screaming’ F1 engine future that may not be out of reach

OPINION: It wasn't just the Verstappen/Hamilton clash that had the Red Bull and Mercedes bosses at loggerheads at Silverstone, with the nature of Formula 1's 2025 engines also subject for disagreement. But hopes to have loud, emotive engines that are also environmentally friendly don't have to be opposed.

Formula 1
Jul 29, 2021
How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’ Prime

How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’

Cast in the mould of its founder Colin Chapman, Lotus was powerful and daring but flawed – as it proved through further soaring peaks and painful troughs into the 1980s. DAMIEN SMITH examines a game-changing era

Formula 1
Jul 27, 2021