Max Verstappen's incidents remind Damon Hill of Ayrton Senna

Max Verstappen's Formula 1 incidents are comparable to Ayrton Senna's early scrapes, reckons 1996 world champion Damon Hill

Max Verstappen's incidents remind Damon Hill of Ayrton Senna

Though Hill believes that Esteban Ocon was primarily at fault in the controversial collision that cost Verstappen Brazilian Grand Prix victory, he thinks a more experienced driver would have left more margin and not become involved in contact.

But he admitted Verstappen's "pattern" reminded him of three-time champion Senna.

"There was another chap in F1 that used to occasionally bump into people when he needn't have done," Hill told Autosport.

"I'm actually thinking of Senna. It's like there's a pattern that evolves when they are very young, and they don't understand.

"Clearly Ocon should not have got himself in a tangle situation with the race leader.

"But Max diced with him, instead of going, 'What is this guy playing at? He's going to be difficult' and waiting for a slightly less risky opportunity.

"I don't want to be critical of Max. It won't make a difference anyway, because he will continue to take risks and drive the way he drives, but he will learn, and eventually he will drive like Lewis [Hamilton] has learned to drive now.

"And he will think this is so important, to win a race is so important and so valuable, you're not going to let silly things put it in jeopardy."

Hill acknowledged that Ocon had the right to unlap himself, with the Force India driver lapping rapidly on brand new supersofts at the time despite only being 14th.

"That's a very interesting argument, and he's under pressure for time too," he said.

"But you have to take extreme care when you're involved in the battle for the lead, maybe even to the point of getting on the radio and asking, 'Can you explain to Red Bull that I'm trying to unlap himself.'

"But he'd only overtake him for a few laps, he'd pass him and then be repassed a few laps later."

Felipe Massa, who was working as a pundit for Brazilian TV at Interlagos, was another F1 veteran who felt Verstappen could have left more room.

"For sure it was a bit strange to see Ocon trying to pass Verstappen at that moment of the race," he told Autosport.

"And then I understood that Ocon had new tyres. The rules say that if you are quicker you can overtake, but you need to take care, which is not what happened in the end.

"But also, and I'm not putting the fault on Max, maybe he could have taken a little bit more care than he did.

"Ocon risked too much, but maybe Max could have avoided it as well."

Regarding the subsequent confrontation in the FIA garage. Massa added: "You know Max, and when blood is getting a little bit hot, it can happen."

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Series Formula 1
Drivers Damon Hill , Jos Verstappen , Max Verstappen , Bruno Senna
Author Adam Cooper
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