The best Formula 1 drivers always have “some sharp edges”, according to former F1 driver Christijan Albers.
He was commenting after fellow Dutchman Max Verstappen, the back-to-back reigning world champion, inexplicably refused to let teammate Sergio Perez past in Brazil so the Mexican can secure second overall in the drivers’ standings.
“I understand that he has his principles, but a driver of his calibre didn’t need to do that,” Albers told De Telegraaf.
“Was this all really worth it? He should be so far above it.”
Dutch GP boss Jan Lammers, however, thinks there is more to the story than just Verstappen’s pride.
“He had the chance to take part in the team’s first one-two. He made a choice,” the former F1 driver told NOS.
Lammers thinks the episode reveals something “personal” between the Red Bull teammates – with Perez even going too far with his post-race comments.
“Perez says Verstappen owes his two titles to him, but he also said he has now seen Verstappen’s true nature which I think it quite personal,” he said.
“It’s a personal insult to Max’s character, which was unnecessary and below the belt. Because if Red Bull had demanded in his contract that he finish third, I think he would have signed with a very thick marker.
“On the other hand, a one-two is a nice gesture towards Dietrich Mateschitz. I think this is more about Verstappen and Perez than the team,” Lammers added.
As far as Albers is concerned, however, Red Bull is simply revealing one of the “sharp edges” that the most successful Formula 1 drivers all seem to have.
“You don’t get a driver who does what you say, is super good with the press, can drive really fast and become world champion,” said the former Minardi driver. “There will always be some sharp edges.
Where Albers does defend Verstappen is over his penalty for the Lewis Hamilton clash at Interlagos.
“I think it’s idiotic,” he said. “There is almost no possibility to race anymore. It’s all controlled way too much now.
“I understand that everything has to be safe, but this is really absurd. This was just real racing, because it’s almost impossible to be really wrong at the apex.”