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Max Verstappen accused Charles Leclerc of “irresponsible driving” after their collision at the start of the Japanese GP.
Leclerc had a slow start from second on the grid and was passed by Verstappen on the outside into Turn 1, then misjudged his speed into Turn 2 and ran wide into the Red Bull.
The clash forced Verstappen off-track and damage forced him to retire early in the race
Speaking before he and Leclerc had met the stewards, an angry Verstappen told Sky F1: “We had a really good start for once, that was a positive.”
“From my side, I don’t think I could have done anything different there. We all know that you lose downforce behind the car so that is not an excuse and I think he is experienced enough to know that.
“The weird thing is initially they didn’t investigate it right away. My whole car is destroyed. The whole side. There are just holes in the side of the car. And now they will investigate it after the race. What more should he do to get a penalty?
“I like hard racing, but I don’t think this was hard racing, I think it was irresponsible driving into turn two. He had a bad start so for sure he was trying to recover places but there’s only so much you can do. It’s a shame that it happens.”