‘English people’ most upset about Russell clash

Both Max Verstappen and George Russell appear unmoved after their on and off-track run-in at Baku.

World champion Verstappen was furious with the Mercedes driver for causing sidepod damage in their wheel-to-wheel scrap on lap 1 of the sprint race.

The Red Bull driver called Russell, also 25, a “d*ckhead” to his face, and later “Princess George” in conversation with Dutch print media.

It sparked a flurry of criticism on social media.

“Especially from English people, I think,” Verstappen is now quoted by De Telegraaf newspaper as having said in Miami on Thursday.

“You know, I just say what I think and keep doing it,” he insisted. “If people have a problem with that, that’s their problem, right?”

As for Briton Russell, he said he was disappointed with the world championship-leader’s reaction at Baku but insisted in Miami that he will “continue racing the same way as I always would”.

“From my side, I went for a move, got the move done and moved on,” he added. “Obviously he was pretty upset about it but that’s racing and these things happen.”

Russell said he is yet to see Verstappen in Miami.

“From my side, there’s no air to be cleared,” he added. “I’ll welcome and say hello to him if he passes by and I’m sure we’ll shake hands when we bump into each other.

“For me it’s history now and it’s behind us.”

When also asked what the state of their relationship is after the clash, Verstappen joked to reporters: “Terrible! No, of course not although that’s what people maybe like to hear.

“But no, it’s absolutely fine.”

Russell’s boss Toto Wolff, meanwhile, is also ready to draw a firm line under the incident.

“A friendly conversation between two drivers that adds to the entertainment,” the Mercedes chief smiled. “Beyond that, it’s irrelevant.

“As long as you’re authentic about it, then it’s fine, and Max is very authentic. An hour later he has already forgotten about it.

“It’s all fine.”

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