Max Verstappen hits out after Norris Austrian GP clash: Every word from fiery interview

The Red Bull star came under fire for causing a collision that forced Norris to retire from the race

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Max Verstappen appeared to refuse to take blame for his clash with Lando Norris that forced the McLaren star to retire from the Formula 1 2024 Austrian Grand Prix.

The pair engaged in a fascinating battle for the lead in the final stages of the race after a slow pit stop from Red Bull pushed Verstappen into Norris‘ clutches.

Norris attempted several overtakes, only to find himself shut down by Verstappen, before their epic tussle came to a head on Lap 64. After the race, the Briton placed the blame on his championship rival.

The McLaren star made another attempt to pass on the outside of Turn 3 under braking, only to be bumped off the track by Verstappen. This time he was in front, but their collision caused both drivers to suffer severe punctures.

Norris took the lead but the puncture caused damage to the floor of his car, while Verstappen limped back to the pits and changed tyres.

He came home to finish in fifth place, while Norris was left with zero points following his retirement. Mercedes star George Russell came home to take a shock win after climbing up from P3.

Verstappen breaks silence over Norris clash

Verstappen came under fire for driving antics after being accused of moving under braking, which is prohibited according to FIA regulations. After the race, the three-time world champion brushed off criticism of his driving.

“Of course from the outside it’s hard to see when I brake. I know in the past it was a bit of a complaint,” Verstappen said to Sky Sports F1.

Max Verstappen during practice ahead of the 2024 Austrian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool
Max Verstappen finished fifth at the 2024 Austrian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

“Now I always move my wheel before I brake, then you brake in a straight-line trajectory. It’s always easy to say on the outside that I’m moving under the braking. But I think the guy in the car knows best what he’s doing.”

When it was put to Verstappen that he received a 10-second penalty from the stewards for causing a collision, the Dutchman stated: “Everyone can have their own opinion. I’m the one driving, so I think I’m best in control… let’s say like that. From the outside, it’s easy to judge and comment. But whatever, it’s what happens.”

Norris blamed for daring overtakes

Verstappen also appeared to direct blame towards Norris for his overtaking manoeuvres, as well as mentioning the difficulty of avoiding contact at Turn 3.

“I felt like sometimes he dive bombs so late on the brakes that you want to demonstrate [a defence]… one time I had to go run to the sausage kerb or whatever you call it, otherwise we would have touched as well,” Verstappen added.

Lando Norris at the 2024 Austrian GP | McLaren F1 Team
Lando Norris was forced to retire from the 2024 Austrian GP | McLaren F1 Team

“So I think it’s also just the shape of the corner, which I say provides these kind of issues sometimes. I’ve had it also the other way around.

“It’s never nice, of course, to come together. I need to look back at why or how we touched and of course we’ll talk about it. It’s just unfortunate that it happened.”

It remains to be seen whether Verstappen will face further punishment for the incident, but the driver confirmed he would attempt to clear the air with Norris.

Joe Krishnan
Joe Krishnan
Joe Krishnan is an NCTJ-qualified journalist who has worked for a number of media organisations, including the Daily Express, The Mirror, Evening Standard, The Independent and Bleacher Report. Joe has been following F1 since when he watched Mika Hakkinen clinch the 1999 drivers' championship, and his first taste of real-life racing action was watching David Coulthard spin off into the gravel at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in 2001.
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