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Verstappen "maybe over the line" with conduct - Wolff

Verstappen "maybe over the line" with conduct - Wolff

F1 News

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Verstappen "maybe over the line" with conduct - Wolff

Verstappen "maybe over the line" with conduct - Wolff

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has stated Max Verstappen was "maybe over the line" with his on-track conduct during a chaotic race in Jeddah.

Lewis Hamilton took a third F1 win in succession to draw level with Verstappen in the drivers' standings in a race full of flashpoints between the title rivals.

Whilst both attacking and defending against Hamilton, Verstappen ran off track but the main controversy came when the Dutchman attempted to allow Hamilton back through on lap 38, only for the pair to collide.

Assessing the race, Wolff said: “It was hard, very hard, maybe over the line hard and we just want to have a clean championship.

“May the best man win and if it is Max at the end then I have peace with that, but it just needs to be a fair race.”

Wolff praises FIA race direction despite "frustration"

Wolff has paid tribute to the FIA and race director Michael Masi despite "frustration" during an incident-packed Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

The race saw numerous interruptions including two red-flag periods, one of which cost Mercedes track position after both Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas had stopped for fresh rubber under the preceding safety car whilst Verstappen had remained on track.

Further confusion and frustration ensued later in the race after Verstappen and Hamilton collided with communications tangled with the Red Bull attempting to concede the lead after leaving the track and gaining an advantage.

Despite the radio transmissions between Mercedes sporting director Ron Meadows and Michael Masi being filled with high tensions, Wolff heaped praise on the FIA race director.

Wolff questioned: "When is a virtual safety car is called, when is a safety car called, when is a red flag? Credit to race control, it is always very difficult to manage that.

“Obviously, we are biased and from our side, there was a certain degree of frustration at the beginning that we had a few laps behind the safety car then it was red flagged and you are losing that position.

“I need to reserve judgement until I have seen the race tomorrow before I say anything that is maybe not right.”

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