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Norris: Will “lose respect” for Verstappen if he ducks blame for Austria F1 clash

Lando Norris says he will “lose respect” for Max Verstappen if the Dutchman maintains he did nothing wrong in their controversial clash in Formula 1’s Austrian Grand Prix.

After a knife-edge battle for several laps, Norris and Verstappen finally came to blows on lap 64 of the Red Bull Ring race, with the pair trading glancing blows in Turn 3 that led to punctures for both.

Verstappen pitted and rallied to finish fifth, while Norris’s McLaren was too damaged to continue.

Afterwards Norris slammed a “desperate” and “reckless” Verstappen for moving in a braking zone and initiating the contact, which the Red Bull driver was handed a 10-second penalty for.

But he also expects an apology from Verstappen, who he has a cordial relationship with, after the Dutchman initially appeared to duck blame for incident.

When asked by if he was looking to clear the air with Verstappen, Norris replied: “It’s not for me to say, it’s for him to say.

“I’m trying to drive a good, fair race. It’s just not what I got in return from his side.

“I feel like what he did was unfair from my side three of the times. No warning was issued. He did it again the final time and ruined both our races, so that’s it.”

Following up to the Sky Sports F1, he added: “If he says he did nothing wrong, then I’ll lose a lot of respect for that.”

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB20, battles with Lando Norris, McLaren MCL38

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

Verstappen said he would talk to Norris about their collision, but wanted tempers to cool down before sitting down with his rival.

“We’ll talk about it, but not now. It’s not the right time, it’s better to cool down,” he said.

“We’re all racing drivers. Of course, you don’t want to crash with each other. When you are fighting for the lead, it’s always tough battles.

“It happened today, which is of course a shame. I’m annoyed, he’s annoyed. I think that’s fair. 

“Of course, Lando and I have a little age gap, that’s why we never really raced against each other in lower categories compared to some other drivers here. But yeah, we’ll move on from here.”

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