Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Interlagos, 2018

Verstappen’s ‘public service’ could involve working with race stewards – Todt

2018 F1 season

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Max Verstappen may have to work with race stewards as part of his ‘public service’ sentence for shoving Esteban Ocon after the Brazilian Grand Prix.

The Red Bull driver was told he must “perform two days of public service at the direction of the FIA” for the post-race incident with Ocon last month. FIA president Jean Todt told Sky in an interview drivers must show respect.

“When you have these kinds of exposures, this kind of fame, it gives you also responsibilities,” said Todt. “So it means that whatever your emotions you must be able to control them. And to respect your supporters, to respect your word.

“If not you have some consequences. But I will say the consequences finally are quite small. Rightly so.

“What’ll it be, honestly nothing has been decided. But clearly it has to be something that will be supportive to the Formula 1 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 [in] a group panel of stewards in another category of motorsport to put yourself in the other side and understand that it’s not always easy. But I’m sure we’ll find some constructive programmes.”

Verstappen said in Abu Dhabi he thought his sentence was “harsh”.

“We’ll discuss, between the team and the FIA, what we’re going to do,” he said. “If I agree with it, it doesn’t really matter, does it? What can you do about it? I find it a bit harsh but we’ll find a solution.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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34 comments on “Verstappen’s ‘public service’ could involve working with race stewards – Todt”

  1. “public”?

    1. That was my thought too. I for one would feel totally served by seeing Max weigh a Formula one car.

      Make him litter pick in a poor neighbourhood or cut grass for the elderly.
      Something that’s worthwhile away from his comfort zone.

    2. Don’t forget that FIA got rich through Ecclestone and that prison fantasy man.
      For them when they say ‘in the public interest’ it means ‘what do I get out of it’.

    3. Maybe “public” and “community” mean the same thing.

  2. Maybe his public service is having his name all in the media as the FIA struggle to find something for him to do. No quiet Christmas for him.

  3. Part of me feels a bit sorry for him, and I’ve a feeling he thinks hes being made to look a fool because of his age.

    Although funny, the jokes of cleaning Hill’s bins or Herbert’s underpants would have hit him hard.
    No Senna or Mansell would have stood for being made fun of like that.

    Surely a couple of license penalty points would have done it, if the FIA was so determined to punish him for an emotional but harmless moment.

    1. Dobb, I believe that Senna may have had to do public service in the past, although that was in relation to a criminal offence outside of the world of motorsport.

      I believe that he once borrowed a motorbike from a friend of his in Portugal and was promptly caught by the Portuguese police riding around without a helmet and, more seriously, without being insured to ride it either. I believe that the police did initially consider stripping him of his licence and that Senna very nearly ended up missing a race because of that, but they ended up watering down the pubishment.

    2. “…he thinks hes being made to look a fool because of his age.”
      OR… is it his age that makes him look a fool…? ;-)

      1. so, you are born old i guess?

        1. It’s more a question of whether or not you grow into your age gracefully or not.

        2. erikje – Guess again… ;-)))
          I could, if so inclined, guess you are a VERfan-boy… lol.
          What happened to your sense of humour…? :)

  4. Another good chance for publicity. Sponsors will be happy. Max just play’s the game, say’s what everybody want’s to hear and goes on.

  5. Still hoping for Max to become like Jody post-Cevert’s death..

  6. Race stewards need their rubbish bins cleaned same as Damon Hill does.

    Can you imagine using Max in steward training?
    Would he just stand there as a live meme?
    “This is Max.
    Max doesn’t respect his fellow competitors & can’t control his emotions on or off the circuit
    Don’t be like Max!”

    1. It wouldn’t be fair to make Max clean rubbish bins. After all, as he repeatedly reminded us as his justification for acting like a jerk, he’s a ‘winner’. Besides, he told the SkyF1 crew that he wouldn’t do anything degrading. I wonder how the F1 fans who happen to be sanitation workers would feel about that. You know, the people who have a job that’s necessary, unlike driving a car around a track?

  7. “This is Max.
    Max doesn’t respect his fellow competitors & can’t control his emotions on or off the circuit
    Don’t be like Max!”

    If they put THAT on pay-per-view, the BOOM you would hear would be the sound of my creditcard exiting my purse at supersonic speed.

    1. +1

      Dale on the other hand is more the Bottas kind of guy.

      1. I had more respect for Bottas before this season.
        You can be a nice guy without getting walked all over …

        1. Yeah, he definetely is a nice guy! LOL :)

  8. Make Max do commercials endorsing the new “Red Cow” decaffeinated non-energy drink.

    1. Lol, “Less caffeine clips your wings and takes a little post-race edge off.”

      Next thing you know, Ocon appears in an ad for a competing brand and says “Don’t have a cow. Shove some of this down your throat three times and you’ll be good to go.”

      1. @robbie, as an aside, there is of course the irony that, if Max were to drink his sponsors drink before a race, he would fail any post race drugs tests – the caffeine content of Red Bull exceeds the amount that the drivers are allowed to consume.

        1. Anon: sauce me on that one please, I’ve
          Always been curious about such things.

  9. Steward: “OK panel, first incident to discuss… young Robbie just picked up his go-kart and threw it at his rival because he cost him a chance to win…”
    Max: “Racing incident, next!”

    1. Lol

      Max: “Been there done that, next!”

    2. haha, nice one

  10. That’d be a good choice.

  11. I reckon everyone (including me) should just drop it. :)
    Couple of young guys get hot after a race, big deal, shows they’re passionate about what they do.
    Adds to the show when the participants push the envelope on and off the track, don’t have a clue whether it was set up, but the triple donut’s surely warrant a massive fine and three weeks breaking rocks.
    @Some say ‘there’s no such thing as bad publicity’.. Right Liberty?

    1. It’s cute that people think this was anything but a staged event to raise publicity…

  12. If Verstappen does spend a little time with racing officials/stewards it will be a good thing. I think it would be good if all new drivers are given a view of the other side to see why and how decisions are made.

    1. After seeing Alonso cutting corners for three laps in a row and receiving all the respect from the fans, I don’t think this is age or expierence related. Nearly every incident results into discussions, regarless if driver are new to sport.

      In this case Ocon was even spurred by his engineer to attack Verstappen, despite being a backmarker.
      After the collission they both tried to put the blame on Verstappen, while the rules are quite firm on a backmarker unlapping himself. Both FI engineer and Ocon got completely lost in emotions during the race…. it is okay to hit someone on track, but unacceptable to hav emoions about it afterwards. Ocon’s words and laughing at Verstappen didn’t really help the situation.

      pushing is not good, but bad racing isn’t either….it this was really very bad racing, there are no exact examples in the history of F1 of a backmarker attacking a race leader so aggressively as Ocon did.

      In the end the FIA want the drivers to be role models… while the FIA/FOM, used the incident as a perfect media tool on twitter and TV, when the attention faded they invited both drivers to the press conferences and put the camara’s on it again.

  13. Just think how boring the last few F1 years would have been without Max . He really spiced things up , made the dead F1 before Max alive again.

    1. He is the reason i still watch F1 otherwise it would get very boring.

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