Heat gets to some drivers at sun-soaked Hungarian Grand Prix
By JEROME PUGMIRE
Jul. 30, 2017
BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Daniel Ricciardo described Max Verstappen's driving as "amateur" after his Red Bull teammate knocked him out of the Hungarian Grand Prix, while two other drivers were involved in a post-race feud on Sunday.
With the asphalt track temperatures well over 50 degrees Celsius (122 Fahrenheit), the heat in Hungary seemingly got to some drivers.
German driver Nico Hulkenberg was also unhappy with Danish driver Kevin Magnussen.
With less than 10 laps to go, Hulkenberg tried to overtake him on the outside but Magnussen — who earlier this week was openly critical of three-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton's driving during practice — shunted Hulkenberg into the grass.
"I'm all for hard racing but he was just ruthless by pushing me off track," Hulkenberg said.
They then argued in front of the television cameras in the media area after the race, with Hulkenberg labeling him "nasty" and Magnussen aiming a profane retort back at the Renault driver.
At least those two are on different teams and don't have to spend any time with each other.
Verstappen, who last season drew stern criticism from Ferrari drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen for his somewhat reckless style, knocked Ricciardo out of the race on Turn 2 of the first lap.
Verstappen swerved into him left-to-right when going wide on the exit from a turn.
"That was amateur to say the least," an irate Ricciardo told broadcaster Sky Sports afterward.
Verstappen, who at 19 years old is seen as the future star of the sport, seems to be more aware of his limitations these days.
While last season he was unapologetic over his daring, sometimes abrasive driving style, he seems more mature this season.
Ricciardo earned no points on Sunday. But he did earn something rare in F1: an apology from Verstappen.
"It is never my intention to hit anyone, but especially not your teammate. Especially with the relationship I have with Daniel, it's always really good and we can always have a laugh," he said. "I apologize to Daniel for that and also to the team because we could have scored some good points here."
At least they will seemingly head into the summer break on better terms.
"I'll speak with Daniel in private and we'll sort it out," said Verstappen, who finished the race in fifth and is sixth overall in the standings.
Ricciardo is fourth, with five podium finishes in the past seven races.
"It was pleasing to see Max put his hand up and immediately apologize," Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said. "We all move on."
The next race, after a month-long break, is the Belgian GP in Spa, nestled in the Ardennes forest.
At least temperatures there will be somewhat cooler.