Ric­cia­rdo slams ‘am­a­teur’ team­mate Ver­stap­pen

Daily News - - SPORT - MO­TOR­SPORT

BU­DA­PEST: Aus­tralian Daniel Ric­cia­rdo blasted Red Bull team­mate Max Ver­stap­pen for “am­a­teur” driv­ing yes­ter­day af­ter the Dutch teenager shunted him out of the Hun­gar­ian Grand Prix on the open­ing lap.

The two started to­gether on the third row and Ric­cia­rdo’s car was smashed into by Ver­stap­pen at Turn Two with the Aus­tralian ahead. The im­pact sent him into a spin, dam­aged the ra­di­a­tor and left the Red Bull stranded on track.

“It was am­a­teur to say the least,” Ric­cia­rdo fumed.

“It’s not like he was try­ing to pass – there was no room to pass… I don’t think he likes when a team­mate gets in front,” he added.

“You’ve got the whole race to try and re­pair the mis­take, but the pass was never on. It wasn’t even a pass, it was a very poor mis­take.”

Ric­cia­rdo, a past win­ner in Hun­gary, had been fastest in Fri­day’s prac­tice and had hopes of a good re­sult with a car ben­e­fit­ing from aero­dy­namic up­dates and well suited to the cir­cuit.

He said the team would sort things out be­tween the two, but sug­gested Ver­stap­pen needed to change his at­ti­tude.

“There isn’t an ex­cuse for it,” he said. “He tried the out­side at Turn One and all of a sud­den what was a good start is a bad start. He sees me go past and thinks ‘I’ve got to fix this’, and then we crash.”

Ver­stap­pen, who was given a 10-sec­ond stop-and-go penalty but still fin­ished fifth, said he would be apol­o­gis­ing.

“It is never my in­ten­tion to hit any­one, but es­pe­cially not your team­mate, and es­pe­cially with the re­la­tion­ship I have with Daniel – it’s al­ways re­ally good and we can al­ways have a laugh,” said the 19-year-old.

“This is not nice and I apol­o­gise to Daniel for that and also to the team be­cause we could have scored some good points here. I’ll speak with Daniel in pri­vate and we’ll sort it out.” – Reuters

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