FIA director Michael Masi condemns Verstappen’s post-race burnout that he judged dangerous. The Australian says it is the last time he will tolerate the move.
After dominating the Styrian Grand Prix, Verstappen wanted to share a moment with his team while he was in his single-seater. The Dutch slowed down heavily in front of the pitlane to do a burnout in front of his celebrating team.
Masi revealed he warned Red Bull as soon as he saw the 23-year-old perform his celebration. Although Formula One’s sporting regulations mention that drivers are allowed to perform a celebration at the end of a race, the latter must not endanger anyone while being performed.
A car heavily slowing down on a straight line is of course something to avoid and is the reason why Masi notified the paddock that a similar move will not be tolerated again. In 2015, a similar situation generated a massive accident as Roberto Merhi almost stopped his car on the start-finish straight to deposit some rubber on the grid. Nicholas Latifi could not avoid the accident and violently smashed his single-seater in the rear of Merhi’s car. Both drivers were unhurt but Merhi was disqualified from the race, following the accident.
“It was not an ideal situation, which is why I spoke to the team immediately and told them accordingly that something that would not be tolerated in future,” said Masi.