Max Verstappen wasn’t a happy camper on Sunday, retiring from the Azerbaijan Grand Prix following another mechanical woe, the fourth in six races.
The Red Bull Racing teenager had been running a confident fourth in the opening stages of the race. But an engine issue forced him into a bitter and disappointing retirement.
Defeated, Verstappen didn’t hang around Baku and skipped the mandatory presence in the media pen. In doing so, he contravened Article 19.4 of the Sporting Regulations stipulating that a driver who has failed to finish must report to the press in the designated area.
The 19-year-old’s snub cost him a 25,000 euro fine. Ouch!
“I didn’t really feel like [talking] at that moment,” Verstappen later explained to Dutch TV show Peptalk. “I was disappointed already as it was.”
Verstappen said that he was busy with post-race debriefing and then felt that it would be better to leave.
“I stayed at the track for half an hour to talk about the race and the balance of the car with my engineers, and then I left,” he said. “I thought it was the smartest thing to do”,
He noted that his team mate Daniel Ricciardi’s victory had only made his own retirement feel even more like a huge lost opportunity.
“If you look at the positions, then you can easily imagine [winning the race] yourself,” said Verstappen.