Nov.16 - Mercedes' furious team boss Toto Wolff is reportedly considering authorising an official protest against Max Verstappen's move in Brazil.

Red Bull's Christian Horner insists the Dutch world championship leader did nothing wrong in defending his position from charging Mercedes rival Lewis Hamilton.

"Penalty for what?" he said.

"I mean, there is no gain, there was no contact. I think it was just a fight between the two of them."

Wolff, however, left Brazil fuming about supposedly unfair treatment by the FIA throughout the entire Interlagos weekend, including Hamilton's qualifying exclusion for the DRS wing violation.

"We treat all the teams fairly - the drivers too," insisted F1 race director Michael Masi.

"I think everyone who is penalised believes it was unfair."

Former Williams driver Sergey Sirotkin told the Dutch publication Formule 1 that he believes Verstappen did in fact act "deliberately" by running the pair of them wide.

"I thought Max might be punished but it seems to me that he would have been if they weren't fighting for the title," he said.

"Since there was no contact or even a change of positions, they simply decided not to intervene," the Russian added.

Some fans are even believing conspiracy theories about one key video angle of the incident - Verstappen's on-board camera - being deliberately hidden by Formula 1.

When asked if that missing footage could be a 'smoking gun' that could ultimately lead to a successful protest, Masi admitted: "Could be. Absolutely."

"But no, we didn't have access to it. Obviously, once the commercial rights holder supplies it, we'll have a look."

Arguably a bigger problem from Verstappen's perspective is the fresh engine that has helped to empower Hamilton with vastly superior straight-line speed for the final trio of races in 2021.

"Of course a new engine brings a significant performance gain at the beginning," the 24-year-old admitted.

"But that will slowly return to normal," Verstappen said. "Maybe it looks a little more dramatic now and the straights are a little too painful for us, but it's been like this all year.

"It goes up, it goes down, I was behind and now I'm in front, so a lot can still happen."


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4 F1 Fan comments on “Key onboard footage Verstappen still missing for Mercedes team protest?

  1. Jere Jyrälä

    I'd be unsurprised if Merc tried using Max's forward-facing T-cam view (if & when it becomes available) to their advantage, given Bottas finished 3.080 sec behind, meaning a five-second penalty would change their positions.

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  2. F1FaNG

    Over and above whatever punitive measures that may or may not be applied to MV, is the fact that MV has to be made to realise that this type of driving is simply unacceptable. Else, nothing will stop MV from deliberately colliding with LH in the future, in order to retain his points lead. This is definitely not the type of "hard racing" that we, the fans signed up for!!!

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    • Nobodysperfect

      Please don't speak for me. I'm F1 fan for over 35 years and sure like those epic and raw fights between Verstappen and Hamilton. But I'm a fan of the sport and not of a particular driver, maybe that's the difference.

      Great to see no interference of stewards this time. If Verstappen wouldn't be here today, F1 would be dead by now, because Mercedes and Hamilton would have won almost all races since 2016...

      The unprofessional foul language of his team boss is not what I signed up for!

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      • shroppyfly

        We get what we expect from Hamishes mouth, but Agreed , not really what a Team principal should be saying over the radio , after all they are always saying they represent "The Brand" and even in the heat of battle, Torger should know better.

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