At the US Grand Prix, Red Bull driver Max Verstappen elicited a huge roar from the grandstands with a last-lap move on Kimi Raikkonen for third place. Unfortunately, the FIA ensured that his joy was short-lived by handing a five-second penalty for cutting the corner at Turn 17. The Dutchman was informed of the decision just before he took to the podium to celebrate. Understandably, he was livid and even called one FIA steward “an idiot”. Now, with the season over and with a cool head he admitted that the Raikkonen overtake was wrong.
However, the 20-year-old is still of the opinion that the subsequent penalty was harsh. He said, “Of course, at first your initial reaction is something like: ‘Why? It was a great move.’ But when you look at the rules, it was not correct. Nothing was by the book that whole weekend. Drivers were getting off track without being penalised for it.”
Verstappen started way down the order, courtesy engine changes. He admitted that he has evaluated the race result with a little more perspective. But Max still insists that the FIA stewards treated him harshly.