F1 issues Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ban after what Max Verstappen did to Lewis Hamilton

Max Verstappen caused a stir as he tangled with George Russell and Lewis Hamilton during second practice at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Friday, prompting the race director to rake action

Formula 1 stars have been banned from overtaking in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix pit lane exit after Max Verstappen’s close shave with Lewis Hamilton in practice.

During the second session on Friday, the Red Bull racer grew impatient with cars moving slowly ahead of him. As soon as he reached the pit lane exit, he swept straight past George Russell who reported it over the radio.

After that, Verstappen had to brake quickly to stay clear of Hamilton. Even so, he forced his way past the British driver and then passed Pierre Gasly as well, allowing him to eventually charge onto the track in open space.

Despite some suggestions to the contrary, the Dutchman had every right to do what he did and there was nothing in the rules that prevented him from overtaking there. However, that is no longer the case.

Niels Wittich, the race director for Formula One, has updated his event notes to prohibit anyone else from attempting a similar stunt for the remainder of the weekend. The document now states, “Overtaking is prohibited in the pit exit road unless a car slows with an obvious problem.”

Commentator David Croft for Sky Sports F1 was live when the Friday pit lane incident occurred. And it had happened not long after Verstappen had complained about Alex Albon in front of him shoving into the line on the radio.

“Would you kindly report that?” Verstappen had made the request over the radio, which did not impress Croft. “Says the man who literally stopped for 12 seconds at the end of the pit lane in Singapore!” he shot back right away. Max, hurry up. Would you kindly report that? It’s a rehearsal, folks!”

In addition, he expressed his opinion regarding Verstappen’s overtaking at the pit lane exit, saying: “To be fair, that is a little cheeky. His current goal is to overcome Pierre Gasly. Max, please stop. I don’t believe that’s necessary. I don’t see the need for it; it’s just silly.”

Verstappen was unapologetic in his post-session remarks, accusing those who obstructed him of moving too slowly. They really have to move,” he remarked. We are running out of time, so I want to leave because they are all driving slowly and they just keep going in the middle of the road. They then attempted to cram me into the wall as I attempted to pass. Thus, yes, a little foolish.”

In the incident-filled session, Verstappen finished third fastest overall, with all cars running far less than they would have preferred. Lando Norris separated himself and Verstappen with a clean lap in his McLaren, while Charles Leclerc led the Ferrari timesheets.

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