Verstappen demands a 'review' after losing the Azerbaijan Grand Prix to teammate
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It was a disappointing weekend all round for reigning Formula 1 World Champion Max Verstappen, who missed out on winning both the sprint and feature races to Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez.
The Mexican's victory in Sunday's Azerbaijan Grand Prix came as a result of Verstappen's ill-timed pitstop - which he is now seeking a review of.
The two Red Bull drivers were head and shoulders above the rest of the field on Sunday (30 April), with both of them easily dispatching of Ferrari's Charles Leclerc in the opening laps.
However, there was very little to separate Verstappen and Perez from there - until a Nyck de Vries spin brought the safety car out a quarter of the way through the Grand Prix.
Unfortunately for Verstappen, he chose to dart into the pits for a change of tyres right before the safety car came out, handing a clear advantage to Perez in the process.
The former Racing Point driver subsequently pitted under the safety car, and re-entered the race well ahead of a seething Verstappen.
It was a defining moment, with the Dutchman unable to pass Perez in the closing stages.
The decision of Red Bull to bring Verstappen in first, despite him leading the race, saw the 25-year-old call for a review of his team's pit procedure following the conclusion of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
Verstappen told the media (via RaceFans): “I saw that there was a car stopped, I thought he maybe just locked up. In hindsight, I mean I can’t see that, but it’s something to review.
“Clearly you could see there was one wheel damaged and it looked like he was not going to drive that anyway back to the pits, even if he would have reversed. So it’s something to look at because, of course, that then did hurt my race after that.”
Verstappen’s lap times had begun to slow shortly before he pitted. However, he said his team should not have taken that as a prompt to bring him in.
“I was not entirely happy with the balance, but also in hindsight, I was probably not pushing it enough initially in some corners,” he explained.
“But that should never be the indication that if there is a car stopped, to just pit, because you know that if there is a Safety Car, then you lose even more time by than staying out."
Perez's pair of wins in the sprint race and feature race have seen the 33-year-old close the gap to Verstappen to just six points in the driver's standings.
Elsewhere in Baku, Leclerc held off Aston Martin ace Fernando Alonso to seal third, while Mercedes driver Sir Lewis Hamilton came home in sixth.
Featured Image Credit: Sky / Alamy
Topics: Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, Formula 1, Mercedes, Ferrari