Lando Norris hits out at Valtteri Bottas over Hungarian GP crash and tells him to learn

F1: Verstappen and Hamilton verbally spar

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Lando Norris has criticised Valterri Bottas after the Mercedes driver crashed into the McLaren driver on the first lap of the Hungarian Grand Prix, forcing him to retire. Norris said that Bottas needed to “learn a little bit more” about racing in the pack.

In damp conditions at the Hungaroring, Bottas lost control at the very first corner of the race as he under-braked and rammed into the back of Norris who in turn pushed Max Verstappen off the track. Bottas’ car rebounded off the McLaren and into Sergio Perez, meaning he had taken both Red Bull cars out.

Norris was clearly very upset with the incident and didn’t appear to have too much sympathy for the Finnish driver

“All of us are in Formula 1 for a reason. We are all good drivers and we know where to brake, where to judge braking zones and so on.

“Especially when it is wet. Especially on the first lap of the race.

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“But obviously some misjudged it completely, so that’s the annoying thing. You expect a little but more from when you are racing those top guys at the front of the field.

“They don’t race that often, they are often quite on their own and not in the pack getting dirty air as much as we are, so maybe they don’t experience it enough and need to learn a little bit more.”

Bottas accepted responsibility for his role in the collision, as he noted he was “a little bit” distracted by Norris overtaking him on the inside and that he lost “a little bit the sense of where you actually are at turn one.”

Bottas continued: “Obviously it was my mistake, I was the one coming in from behind. It’s up to me to brake early enough but I misjudged the braking point.

“It shows it’s not so easy in those conditions to predict but I should have braked earlier. I was closing in and locked the wheels and hit Lando and that caused the whole mess.”

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Bottas was handed a five-place grid penalty as well as two super license points by Formula 1 authorities for causing the crash.

Norris is not the only one to be irked by Bottas’ error; his collision with both Red Bull cars meant that Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton was able to overtake Verstappen in the world championship standings. Tensions between the two teams were already running high before the Hungarian Grand Prix and relations are sure to be even more strained now.

While Bottas has apologised to Norris for the crash, the 21-year-old said that it didn’t mean much given that it does nothing to affect the result of the race as Formula 1 pauses for a three-week summer break.

Norris said: “it’s frustrating, I guess, a little bit for our morale, for the motivation of everyone.

“You just want to enter [the break] strong so everyone is happy and energised and everything. When I’m into third of course everyone is happy, and then you’re out of the race and everyone’s happiness goes away.

“But we also know it’s not our fault. We did everything, we had a good weekend, I was into third place but yeah, because of none of our faults we are out of the race.”

Norris has enjoyed an impressive start to his third season in Formula 1, currently sitting third in the championship standings (albeit a long way behind Verstappen and Hamilton). Despite the disappointing events in Budapest he is trying to remain positive, saying: “I don’t think we can get so annoyed about it. We have to keep our heads high and just focus on the next one.”

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