Kevin Magnussen believes a complaint from Esteban Ocon pressured the FIA into showing his Haas car the orange and black flag during the Canadian Grand Prix.
On the opening lap of the race, Magnussen had a tussle with the Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton, something that left minor damage on the Danish driver’s front wing.
While he was happy to continue with the race as the damage was only slight, the FIA opted to call him into the pits to have the wing replaced. This move ensured that any chance of finishing in a strong points position, possibly even a podium, was dashed.
After the race, Magnussen discovered that rival driver, Ocon, had complained to the FIA to ensure that the Haas was called into the pits, allowing the Alpine to move up the order in his place.
Driver safety too important to ignore
The sports governing followed Ocon's complaint with the orange and black flag, stating that he "would get hit in the head with a piece of the front wing if it came loose" as driver safety is so vitally important.
Fans may remember Felipe Massa was hit in the head in Hungary, back in 2009, when a piece from Rubens Barrichello’s car fell off and hit the Ferrari racer on the helmet at high speed.
As a result, Massa was knocked unconscious and went head first into the barriers. He went on to miss the remainder of the season.
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Magnussen had post-race chat with Ocon
According to Magnussen, Ocon went to him after the race and explained that he reported that the damage was bad on purpose, something the Haas driver was far from impressed with.
"I had some contact, but it was nothing serious. Some scratches on the front wing, but then I had to make a pit stop," he explained to the media, including RacingNews365.com.
"I was just talking about it with Esteban, who joked that he had told the FIA it was very bad. If you know that you can influence the FIA in that way, then you do. He did, so fair play to him."
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