Speaking in Abu Dhabi last week, having jokingly suggested that attending the FIA Gala could form his public service, Max Verstappen made clear that it must not be anything demeaning, anything that would embarrass him, the youngster clearly failing to understand that the punishment – which is in respect of the fact that he “made deliberate physical contact with the driver of car 31 (Esteban Ocon) in the FIA garage” in Brazil – is to teach him a lesson. It is to teach him some humility, and if there is a certain amount of embarrassment involved so be it.
However, speaking to Sky Sports, FIA president, Jean Todt, has admitted that the Red Bull driver will not be required to pick up litter in the Place de la Concorde, but rather something supportive of the sport.
“We will see,” says Todt, when asked what the youngster’s punishment might be, “I mean, again, it’s raw emotion, when you have these kinds of exposures, this kind of fame, it gives you also responsibilities.
“So it means that whatever your emotions you must be able to control them,” he continues. “And to respect, you know, to respect your supporters, to respect your word. If not, you have some consequences. But I will say the consequences, finally are quite, quite small. Rightly so.
“What can it be, nothing has been decided,” he admits, “but clearly it has to be something that will be supportive, supportive to the Formula One world, supportive to the racing world.
“Maybe a contribution to work closer with some stewards or some officials during some training, during some education groups. We have different things which are going to happen next year.
“Maybe participate to a group panel of stewards in another category of motorsport to put yourself in the other side and understand, you know, to understand that it’s not always easy. But I’m sure we will find some constructive programmes.”