Lewis Hamilton’s Silverstone crash with Max Verstappen has cost Red Bull £1.3MILLION to repair the Dutchman’s car as Christian Horner reveals his team are considering appealing ‘lenient’ punishment handed to Mercedes star
Red Bull boss Christian Horner has revealed Lewis Hamilton’s crash with Max Verstappen has left his team with a £1.3million repair bill.
In a column published on Friday evening, Horner also said Red Bull were still weighing up whether to lodge an official review of Hamilton’s ‘lenient’ sanction and claimed Hamilton ‘did not show the necessary restraint’ in his victory celebrations following Sunday’s explosive British Grand Prix.
Hamilton and Verstappen collided at 180mph at Copse corner on the opening lap of the Silverstone race.
Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen collided at 180mph on opening lap at British Grand Prix
Red Bull man Verstappen hit the tyre barrier at 51G and spent six hours in a hospital
Verstappen hit the tyre barrier at 51G and spent six hours in a hospital in Coventry before he was given the all-clear.
Seven-time world champion Hamilton was handed a 10-second penalty after he was deemed ‘predominantly at fault’ for the accident, but he recovered from the punishment to win, and reduce the championship deficit from 33 points to eight.
He celebrated his victory in front of the 140,000 fans at Silverstone, leading Verstappen to tweet from hospital that his rival was ‘disrespectful’ and ‘unsportsmanlike’.
In a lengthy column, published to the Red Bull website, Horner said: ‘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.
‘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 USD1.8million and an accident like that has massive ramifications in a budget cap era.
‘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 hospitalised and requiring further checks.
Hamilton controversially went on to win and cut the championship points gap to eight points
‘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 penalised for.’
Horner continued his criticism of Hamilton for his role in the first-lap crash.
He added: ‘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.
Red Bull boss Christian Horner says the crash has left his team with a £1.3m repair bill
‘I also felt the narrative that Max was being ‘overly aggressive’ was unjustified. You only have to look at the fact Max has zero penalty points on his licence and has not been found guilty of any on-track misjudgements 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.’
Hamilton and Verstappen will lock horns at the Hungarian Grand Prix next weekend, the final round before Formula One’s summer break.
Horner concluded: ‘I spoke to Max on Monday morning and he felt like he’d done a few rounds with Tyson Fury.
‘He was battered and bruised but feeling lucky and grateful to the medical team, as we all are, and in true Max style he was already trying to put it out of his mind and look ahead to Hungary.’