Martin Brundle has given a verdict after seeing the hitherto unavailable Brazilian GP footage featuring the duel between the championship leaders.
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton duked it out in Brazil for the win. Although the latter ran away with the victory, there was an incident between them that created a lot of controversy.
With Hamilton inches behind him at one point, Verstappen forced him off the track and went off it himself. The two drivers rejoined the track with the Red Bull driver in the lead, but he had committed a punishable track offence.
However, the FIA controversially refused to give him a penalty. More surprisingly, they later came out and said that they did not have access to Verstappen’s onboard footage at the time. This led to heavy backlash from fans, upon which they requested for and inspected it.
Brundle gave a verdict after seeing the Brazilian GP footage of the two drivers, and his comments did not match public opinion.
As quoted by express.co.uk, the pundit wrote in his column for Sky, “I’m sure that Max would also say that when he realised Lewis had gone into the run-off area, he straightened his car to do the same and accelerate away.
“On viewing the onboard footage, it confirms that Max braked very late and was slow and limited with his turn-in point, but at no point did he open the steering wheel towards Lewis.”
Brundle explained that Verstappen did not deliberately drive into Hamilton, therefore making what he did something with two sides to argue for.
“It was totally on the limit and could have easily gone either way with the stewards. It warranted a driving-standards warning black and white flag at least,” he continued.
“Mercedes may still ask for a stewards’ review, but those claims rarely get a change of decision.
“In any event, Red Bull will say they cruised at the end and so any five-second penalty putting them behind (Valtteri) Bottas would be unfair, Max would have just driven faster, to which Mercedes will say so would have Valtteri,” he concluded.