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Max Verstappen

Verstappen still frustrated: Hamilton looked at me while pushing me wide

Max Verstappen remains of the view that the penalties he picked up in Saudi Arabia were "unfair" and that other drivers "get away with it".

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To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

Red Bull's Max Verstappen cut an unrepentant figure as the Dutch driver spoke to the media for the first time since the contentious Saudi Arabian Grand Prix weekend, in which he was given two separate time penalties for driving offences.

One of those incidents was for being found to have brake tested Lewis Hamilton while trying to let his title rival past him down the back straight, having kept the lead by running wide through Turn 1.

As Verstappen slowed down, Hamilton didn't immediately overtake and the resulting braking saw the Mercedes driver clout the back of the Red Bull.

Verstappen was given a five-second penalty for running wide at Turn 1, as well as a 10-second penalty for the collision. However, Verstappen still felt he'd done nothing wrong in Saudi Arabia and said that the recently issued warning from Michael Masi ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is somewhat meaningless.

"Well, clearly, these don't apply for everyone," Verstappen told media, including RacingNews365.com, when asked about the FIA warning.

"Because the things I did in terms of defending, two other guys in terms of racing also did, they didn't even get a mention or penalty.

"I don't understand, because I thought I was just racing hard. What happened, for me, didn't deserve any penalty. Really, the other two people who did it, they didn't get one.

"It's only me who gets it and, of course, fighting up the front, people that were more critical, I guess. For me, I don't understand."

"Hamilton looked at me while pushing me wide"

Verstappen went on to frustratedly point out that other drivers did the same thing he did, but didn't meet with penalty.

"For me, I was not wrong. And clearly, only I was wrong, somehow," he said.

"Other people did exactly the same thing and they get nothing because both of us are off the track.

"We're outside of the white line into Turn 1. Somehow they judged that it was my fault, which I don't agree with. The other penalty as well, I don't agree with, then afterwards, he [Hamilton] pushes me off the track."

Verstappen was referring to an incident after the collision, when he ceded the position to Hamilton.

As Hamilton passed, he crowded Verstappen off the track at the final corner. This resulted in Mercedes getting a radio message from Masi to threaten a black and white flag for unsporting driving, but nothing further.

"He even looked at me and just doesn't turn in, and just pushed me outside of the white line at the track edge, and he only gets a warning for that," Verstappen said.

"So it's definitely not how it should be and it's also not fair, because it seems like other drivers could do different things, and it seems like only I get a penalty.

"At the end of the day, criticism is always there. But I think, for myself, what isn't fair is that I'm just treated differently than other drivers.

"Clearly, other drivers can get away with it and I can't. That's a bit of a problem."

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