Haas F1 driver Kevin Magnussen has declared that he is prepared to die in his Formula 1 car. He insists that his approach to racing will not change. His comments come on the back of criticism from fellow drivers, the latest one being Pierre Gasly.
Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly branded Magnussen as “the most dangerous guy I have ever raced with”. The young Frenchman was on the receiving end of a high-speed run-in during the closing stages of last weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Subsequently, the Haas driver was handed a 10-second time penalty. This wasn’t Gasly’s first near miss that weekend, he had another close shave with teammate Brendon Hartley.
The Dane’s driving standards have been called into question on several occasions. He also clashed with Renault driver Nico Hulkenberg at the 2017 Hungarian Grand Prix. The Renault driver subsequently labelled Kevin Magnussen as the “most unsporting driver”. To which, Magnussen responded “S**k my b*lls, honey”
Coming back to the incident with Gasly, Kevin Magnussen said, “I don’t like compromises. I will give everything. I will die in the car. I won’t hold back. I would put my life on (the line). Absolutely. When you put your helmet on and you’re in the race, I find that’s just everything there is in the world.”
“I love my family, and there’s so many things in life I enjoy, but when I’m in the car there’s nothing else that means anything. For me, when I get in the car, the essential of life is Formula 1.”
Magnussen has been openly vocal on his dislike of the Halo cockpit protection system. He said that he would have preferred to race in the 1950s and 1960s era. That era was often considered as F1’s most dangerous period.
“I dream of racing in the ‘60s. If I had one wish, I would say to be born in the ‘30s and be young in the ‘50s and ‘60s. It hurts my racing heart when I see things so far from what it was back then. I envy those guys so much.
“It was just pure and more exciting. You could make a difference if you were really willing to take risks. And also if you felt comfortable on that limit. Now everyone feels comfortable, there’s no risk.
“Back then, if you have the ability to be calm and collected, on the limit of death effectively, you made a difference. And now that’s not really a factor any more.”