July 23, 2024

George Russell has spoken out about his public spat with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

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George Russell affirmed that he did not expect to receive an apology from Max Verstappen, despite being called a “bastard” by the Dutch driver after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix sprint race earlier this year. The Mercedes driver insisted there was “water under the bridge” after the April race, despite tensions between the two.

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Verstappen was furious with Russell after the pair became tangled in the opening stages of the sprint race on the streets of Baku. The two collided at the second corner as Russell tried to squeeze through a gap inside the Red Bull driver after a fast start. After the race, the Briton pleaded guilty and was heard saying:
“I didn’t mean anything” before Verstappen retorted:
“We all have no control, we all have to leave a little space.” As Russell left the situation, cameras recorded Verstappen shouting:
“Expect the same next time, asshole.”

The incident was never resolved publicly, and Russell has now revealed that he did not expect to receive an apology because of his temper which often flares up in the heat of the moment. Speaking on the Beyond The Grid podcast, the Briton explained:
“It’s a race. It is a physical sport even if it is sometimes not perceived as such. The cognitive stress you’re under, your own personal pressure… We all want to do the best job we can and we all respect that. Click here to join our WhatsApp community and be the first to receive the latest exclusive F1 news.

“None of us went out there to intentionally crash or take someone else away. An apology was never necessary. It didn’t matter what was said. In those moments, an hour after the race, no matter what, it didn’t matter. tell what people say. “The water is under the bridge and you keep going. You may not be best friends in future races, but we are all mature enough to realize that this is what racing is. »

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Instead, Russell’s main issue with Verstappen appears to be the way he won the 2021 drivers’ championship, beating teammate Lewis Hamilton in controversial circumstances. The Red Bull driver won in Abu Dhabi when he qualified on the final lap thanks to the late withdrawal of the safety car by now-fired race director Michael Masi.

Speaking about the incident, Russell reluctantly admitted to winning the title, saying:
“Let’s go back to 2020, when Mercedes built one of the most competitive cars of all time. Then in 2021, Max won the championship. Or at least there was a fight between Max and Lewis for the title.”

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