Even a Lewis Hamilton cannot put away these images so easily. The duel with Max Verstappen for the World Cup has reached a new level of escalation. Lessons from the Italian Grand Prix.
Max Verstappen’s Red Bull lands on Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes.
imago images/Motorsport Images
The Formula 1 title fight is life-threatening. “The Halo saved Lewis’ life today,” wrote Mercedes after Lewis Hamilton’s serious crash with Max Verstappen in Monza. The accident in which the cockpit protection saved the seven-time record world champion from worse will not be forgotten anytime soon. Also because Verstappen was punished for it after the Italian Grand Prix.
Halo as a guardian angel for Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton was just happy and grateful. “It only takes a millisecond from racing to a very scary situation,” emphasized the 36-year-old. The pictures of the Red Bull on the Mercedes were terrifying. Hamilton was hit in the crash of the title rivals by Red Bull on Sunday. Someone took care of him, said the Mercedes driver.
His guardian angel is called Halo, the halo in the form of the cockpit protection, which has been mandatory in Formula 1 since 2018. Red Bulls team boss Christian Horner found the fact that Verstappen was punished for his maneuver by the race management “disappointing. But we accept the decision of the stewards”, said team boss Christian Horner. Verstappen, the World Cup leader with a five-point lead, will have to drop three places in the starting line-up in Russia in two weeks.
Whip and advocate
Andreas Seidl himself took care of the cheers. “Super Daniel, Super Daniel, hey, hey, hey,” agreed the McLaren team boss. And there was also the serenade for the second driver: “Super-Lando, Super-Lando, hey, hey, hey”, Seidl chanted – and the crew loudly joined in. In January 2019, the 45-year-old Bavarian took over the position of team boss of the historically glorious and well-known racing team, which, however, has been far from previous successes in recent years. Seidl, the whipper, brought McLaren back on track. Ricciardo’s victory in Monza ahead of Norris ended an almost nine-year phase full of longing, but without a single success.
Haas remains an accident risk
This time Nikita Mazepin took the blame outright. The Russian caused problems again at the Haas. It hit teammate Mick Schumacher. He drove almost 40 laps behind. “And I have to say, that was absolutely my fault. That was a typical racing accident where you see a chance and then you do the move and don’t go through with it and then it happens. I’m sorry it happened to him”, said Mazepin, who had to end the race early at the Haas. Mick Schumacher turned 15.
Sprint – nobody needs it
“I don’t even know what happens when,” said Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff. As for the first time this season at Silverstone, the starting grid for the race in the Royal Park was determined in a race over 18 laps. The mode is officially called Sprint Qualification. The usual qualification in a knockout took place on Friday evening in order to again determine the starting positions for the sprint. If Wolff had their way, the first free practice session would take place on Friday afternoon, the second on Saturday morning, followed by qualification and “a fantastic race on Sunday,” said the 49-year-old Austrian.