F1 drivers differ over Ocon-Verstappen clash and aftermath | 2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Formula 1 drivers gave a mix of views on the collision between Max Verstappen and Esteban Ocon in the Brazilian Grand Prix and its aftermath.

Force India driver Sergio Perez, who’s had several collisions with team mate Ocon, believes Verstappen should have given him more space.

“Obviously it’s not great to see that kind of incident,” said Perez when asked by Racefans. “It was difficult decision for both of them.

“There was a point where I feel that Esteban tried too much with the race leader. But also the race leader didn’t give him any room to avoid the contact. There was a point where Esteban tried too much but there was a point also where he couldn’t do anything. He had no space.

“So it was very unfortunate. I think what happened wasn’t great but it should not harm more his reputation. I think a lot of people have been very harsh on him the past week. He’s a very good driver, he did a mistake and he knows that but at the same time I also feel that Max did a mistake too not have avoided the accident.”

However Valtteri Bottas said he could “see Max’s frustration” at being knocked into a spin by Ocon, who was trying to un-lap himself.

“He was going for the win,” said Bottas in response to a question from RaceFans. “When you’re overtaking a backmarker normally you do expect respect and not a collision. So for sure it’s unexpected for him, what happened. So I do see the frustration.”

Max Verstappen, Esteban Ocon, Interlagos, 2018Bottas had a ringside seatVerstappen could have left Ocon more space but didn’t have to, said Bottas. “If you would have wanted to play it safe – I don’t know how much there was margin behind someone – sure it would have been possible. But in the end he doesn’t have to because he’s overtaking a backmarker.”

Bottas was standing by the pair after the race when Verstappen began shoving Ocon, and criticised the Red Bull driver’s behaviour.

“Honestly I don’t see the point in pushing anyone. What does it help? We’re all free to say anything we think but I think for the sport in general, sportsmanship in all the sports, it’s not right. That’s why he got a punishment for that. So I think that’s solved.

Fernando Alonso also “I would not support that because I think personal contact should not be the way to go. But everyone is different.

“Max is very aggressive, very emotional as well. But it’s part of his success as well. Everyone is different.”

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