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Max Verstappen

The Verstappen/Hamilton moment missed by the cameras in Abu Dhabi

Ahead of the title-deciding Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen faced the media in a press conference. Presenter Tom Clarkson has shared an amusing anecdote of a big behind-the-scenes moment.

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To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool / Getty Images

Going into the title-deciding Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, it seemed that all eyes were on Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. However, it turns out that a key moment between the pair was completely missed by the cameras.

F1 journalist Tom Clarkson - who poses the questions in the driver press conferences over race weekends - has shared an amusing anecdote from the pre-race media session attended by the championship rivals.

The title contenders were involved in a friendly exchange before the event had properly started, and Clarkson felt that it provided the main shot that fans would want to see.

"There was a funny moment on the weekend where, prior to having Max and Lewis together on Thursday, there was a big discussion about do we go for the cheesy handshake shot," Clarkson told the F1 Nation podcast.

"Which I think you [Damon Hill] and [Michael] Schumacher did a few times, didn't you? So it's, are we going to go for the cheesy handshake shot because that's what all the newspapers will want?

"Anyway, Max arrives early, sits down, and we're just having a chat. About three minutes later, Lewis walks in, walks straight over, fist bumps him and goes, 'How you doing, man?' and they have a bit of a chat.

"I thought, brilliant. That is the shot. I don't need to worry about this cheesy handshake thing anymore. And we had a Netflix camera in there. We had the two cameras that we have in the press conference room anyway. There was even a photographer in there as well."

A moment missed

Unfortunately, despite the array of cameras in the room, it turned out that none of them had captured the moment between Hamilton and Verstappen.

"So the press conference happens and they have a good natter," Clarkson explained.

"And then at the end, I said to the Netflix guy, 'Ah, you must have enjoyed the fist bump'. And he goes, 'Oh, I missed it, mate, I missed it'. I said, 'You missed it?' And he said, 'Yeah, I was focusing on Lewis. and by the time I'd seen what was happening, I'd missed it'. 'Oh, okay'.

"So I then turn to the camera guy for FOM [Formula 1 Management]. And I said, 'Did you get it?' And he said, 'No, mate, we still had the slate up', prior to the start of the press conference.

"I then went to the photographer, 'Did you get it?' And he went, 'Er, no, mate, sorry, I didn't get it. I had the wrong lens on'.

"So no one knows about this fist bump, except for me and the people in [there], about three others in the room!"

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