The Dutchman, who started in first place, was overtaken by George Russell, who drives for Mercedes, at the very first turn. Then, when Hamilton got close to him out of the second turn, he was too slow going into the third turn, so Hamilton passed him and took second place. When he did this, Hamilton moved wide on the exit which made Verstappen feel that he didn’t get enough space on the track as required by racing rules.
The Red Bull driver complained about an incident on the team radio and then said he tried to avoid contact. He thought Hamilton’s behavior didn’t follow the regulations. The driver said even though there was a commotion, they were still able to keep up their fast pace and pass everyone. He suggested that they should take this into account for future races.
At the beginning of last year, the FIA (Federation de Internationale de l’Automobile or “FIA” in English) made new rules to help drivers know when they should give other drivers room after passing them while racing.
When a car is being overtaken, it needs to leave enough room for the other car. For this to happen, the overtaking car has to be close enough and make sure they stay on track while passing by in a safe way.
When deciding if a car around the corner is allowed to go by another car, the race track officials will be paying close attention to see if the front tires are next to the other car by no later than when they reach the middle of the turn. Verstappen said he was taking it easy because there wasn’t anything he could gain by taking too many risks.
Max Verstappen from Red Bull Racing RB19 said that he had a slow start in the race but his car’s performance was very good. He mentioned that what caused him trouble was all the confusion caused by the red flags of FIA. He also said, “You could see just how fast my car was straight away”.
We waited for a long time for the DRS (Drag Reduction System) to open so we could have a chance to pass the other racers. It was difficult with some of the red flags (signs put up during racing to warn racers). The first one wasn’t bad, but we didn’t understand the second one too well. In the end, though, we stayed strong and had good speed in our car—which is most important—and won!
Verstappen’s only worrisome moment was late on when he had an unexpected drive across the grass at the second to last corner. He did this to try and stop his car from making too hard of a turn.
He said, “I didn’t want to ruin my tire, so I trailed off the track a bit; but, fortunately, I had plenty of time.”
He added joyfully that it was amazing to win here and also be the first one to do so in a long time for his team!