Sir Jackie Stewart rips into ‘cocky’ Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen for ‘overdoing it’ in their F1 title battle – and claims the Red Bull driver would have DIED if his Silverstone accident had happened in his era
- F1 title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen ‘are both overdoing it’
- Sir Jackie Stewart also said the pair were ‘cocky’ at Silverstone earlier this year
- Red Bull’s Verstappen is 12 points ahead of Mercedes’ Hamilton in title battle
Max Verstappen ‘would have died’ from his Silverstone crash with Lewis Hamilton had it happened 50 years ago, according to Sir Jackie Stewart.
The Formula One legend believes the fierce title rivals Hamilton and Verstappen ‘are both overdoing it’ this season and branded the pair ‘cocky’ at the British Grand Prix in the summer.
Red Bull’s Verstappen is currently 12 points ahead of Mercedes’ Hamilton in the world championship battle and the duo have been locked in a heated fight all season.
The pair collided at 180mph at Copse corner on the opening lap of the British Grand Prix back in July, and just two months later both drivers were involved in a horror crash at the Italian Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton (L) and Max Verstappen (R) ‘are both overdoing it’, says Sir Jackie Stewart
Stewart, a three-time world champion, has insisted that the pair ‘should be careful’
The British Grand Prix got off to an explosive start when Hamilton and Verstappen crashed
Stewart, a three-time world champion, has insisted that the pair ‘should be careful’ that their desire to come out on top does not have repercussions.
‘We should be careful that they don’t get too carried away with the need to win a race,’ he told Motorsport-Magazin.com.
‘I think they are both overdoing it a bit at the moment. We’ve seen that in at least two situations.
‘I hope we will remember it in as positive a way as possible because I don’t want anything bad to happen, even though motorsport is so safe these days.
‘The accident that happened at Silverstone – in my time he [Verstappen] would have died. I think the problem at Silverstone was that they both did things they shouldn’t have done so early in the race. I think they were both cocky.’
At Silverstone, Verstappen hit the tyre barrier at 51G and was given the all-clear after spending six hours in a hospital in Coventry.
The bitter title rivals then crashed at the Italian Grand Prix in Monza just two months later
Hamilton was saved from serious injury by the protective Halo device on his Mercedes
The rear end of Verstappen’s Red Bull came within inches of Hamilton’s head after collision
Seven-time world champion Hamilton received a 10-second penalty after he was judged ‘predominantly at fault’ for the accident, but he recovered to win in front of 140,000 fans.
The crash sparked a row, with Verstappen tweeting from hospital that his rival was ‘disrespectful’ and ‘unsportsmanlike’.
The drivers then collided on lap 26 at Monza, with the Red Bull car’s wheel landing on Hamilton’s head.
The Briton was almost certainly saved from serious injury by the Halo safety device, a titanium bar placed above the driver’s head that has been mandatory in Formula One since 2018.
In an increasingly heated world championship duel the two drivers both accused the other of being in the wrong after the race, with Hamilton saying Verstappen ‘knew what was going to happen, but he still did it.’
In an exclusive interview with Sportsmail, F1 legend Stewart was disappointed to see Verstappen walk away without stopping to check if Hamilton was OK.