Red Bull is considering asking for a review of Lewis Hamilton’s penalty in the British Grand Prix after revealing the cost of the damage to Max Verstappen’s car at $1.8 million.
Hamilton was handed a 10-second time penalty at Silverstone after he made contact with Verstappen’s right-rear wheel at Copse at nearly 180mph, pitching the championship leader into the barrier at high speed. The Red Bull was effectively destroyed in the incident after an impact of 51G, and Horner says a request to review the penalty might still be forthcoming.
“It is no secret that we felt at the time, and still feel, that Hamilton was given a light penalty for this type of incident,” Horner said. “Given the severity of the incident and the lenient penalty, we are reviewing all data and have the right to request a review. We are therefore still looking at the evidence and considering all of our sporting options.
“The other significant factor is the cost-cap element of this. That crash has cost us approximately $1.8 million and an accident like that has massive ramifications in a budget cap era.”
Horner is also still unhappy about the level of postrace celebrations from Mercedes on Sunday, given the knowledge Verstappen was in hospital at the time undergoing MRI and CT scans.
“I would like to respond to some comments I have seen from Toto (Wolff), who is quoted as saying our comments regarding Hamilton having caused the accident were ‘so personal.’
“I would like to make it clear. This was an on-track incident between two of the best drivers in the world. At the point in time when you have a driver in hospital and the extent of any injuries have not yet been made clear, your car has been written off and the stewards have penalized the driver seen to be responsible, it is natural that emotion comes into play, for all involved, whether you feel wronged or victorious.
“I also felt the narrative that Max was being ‘overly aggressive’ at that stage was unjustified. You only have to look at the fact Max has zero penalty points on his license and has not been found guilty of any on-track misjudgments in recent years. The aggressive 17-year-old F1 rookie Max Verstappen that Hamilton is referring to is not the Max Verstappen of today, just as Hamilton is not the same driver he was when he entered the sport.
“Both drivers are of course uncompromising in their driving style, but they are both highly skilled drivers with a great deal of experience. The reality is that Hamilton has met his match in a car that is now competitive, and I agree that both drivers need to show each other respect, but Hamilton was the aggressor on Sunday.
“I am also still disappointed about the level of celebrations enjoyed in the wake of the accident. The Mercedes team were aware of the gravity of the crash with Max widely reported as having been hospitalized and requiring further checks.
“It is unimaginable not to inform your driver of the situation, moreover to protect your driver in case they do not show the necessary restraint in celebrating, particularly when it was as a result of an incident he was penalized for.”