Azerbaijan Grand Prix moments: Red Bull wipe outs, safety car squabbles and a Mercedes mix-up – Sky Sports

F1 News
Last Updated: 07/06/22 3:35pm
Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

As the countdown continues to this weekend’s highly-anticipated Azerbaijan Grand Prix, we take a look back at some of the biggest moments that the punishing speed circuit has provided over its first five races.
When it comes to drama in Formula One, there are some events that are renowned for their title-altering incidents. Since 2016 another track has joined the ranks of the most demanding drives – the Baku City Circuit.
A speedy street track made up of a mega slipstream and tight, touch-and-go corners, the punishing drive leaves no room for error, even for the best of drivers, and has been a home of controversy and collisions since its inception.
Tensions flared and battle lines were drawn in 2017 as two world champions went head-to-head behind a safety car and both came away worse off.
As Hamilton and Vettel prepared for a restart following a second safety car period in an incident-filled race, Vettel ran into the back of the Mercedes at Turn 15, causing damage to his front wing.
Vettel, believing that Hamilton had brake-tested him, responded by pulling up alongside and banging into Hamilton’s car and was handed a 10-second time penalty as a result.
However, he still managed to finish ahead of Hamilton, coming home in fourth with Hamilton just behind him in fifth.
After the race, both headed to their post-race press interviews with visible anger still present and were quick to lay the blame on each other.
“I think it kind of sets a precedent within Formula One,” said Hamilton.
“I think it also does for all those young kids who are watching us drive and conduct ourselves.
“They have seen today how a four-time world champion behaves and hopefully that doesn’t ripple down into the younger categories.
“In terms of how things are penalised, how you can do something like that then finish fourth, I don’t know.”
Although Hamilton clearly believed that Vettel was to blame for driving dangerously, the Ferrari man saw the incident through quite a different lens.
He responded: “The leader dictates the pace but we were exiting the corner and he was accelerating and then he braked so much that I was braking as soon as I saw, but I couldn’t stop in time and ran into the back of him and I think that was just not necessary.
“I think Formula One is for grown-ups.
“As I said the manoeuvre before was not necessary, he damaged my front wing and it damaged also his rear a little bit so I just think that was not the right way to do it.”
Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo took team tensions to a new level at the 2018 Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with both drivers being reprimanded for a crash that led Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner to send both drivers to the factory to apologise to their team.
It was a moment that had been building between the teammates, having already twice banged wheels during an increasingly fraught race-long duel, before lap 40 saw both drivers’ races end, Ricciardo heavily colliding into the back of Verstappen as he tried to overtake.
“We allow them to race, we allow them to go wheel-to-wheel. We discussed in the pre-race meetings about giving each other space and this was the culmination of two guys taking things into their own hands which shouldn’t have happened,” said Horner.
“They are both in the doghouse, you can see that in their body language and they will be in the factory to apologise to all the staff prior to the Barcelona race.”
Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

In a pivotal race in the intense title battle between Hamilton and Verstappen, Formula One fans were gifted an extraordinary race and the unlikeliest of podiums to go with it.
Verstappen was on track to take a key victory and stretch his lead over rival Hamilton when his left-rear tyre suffered a puncture and he was sent crashing into the wall.
He took his frustration out on the failed tyre as he seemed set to lose his championship lead to the seven-time world champion.
However, Verstappen’s misfortunes were soon to be matched by his fellow title contender in an extraordinary twist.
On a restart after a red flag, Hamilton’s breaks were visibly smoking as he lined up on the grid and instead of taking the lead over Sergio Perez into Turn One, the Mercedes headed straight down the escape road and re-joined the pack in 15th, ending a record run of 54 races in the points stretching back to 2018.
From Hamilton’s knocking of a switch in the cockpit, the tight title race was held in limbo for another week and Sergio Perez, Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll were the figures standing on the podium at the end of the day.
It was a race of mixed emotions at the Mercedes garage in 2018, with delight for Hamilton being met with agony for Valtteri Bottas, who suffered a cruel twist of fate that cost him the race.
Bottas was leading the race before a late puncture robbed him of a well-earned victory, his teammate inheriting the win as a lock-up from Vettel whilst trying to overtake Bottas’ stricken car sent him from second to fourth.
“Valtteri really deserved to win and drove an exceptional race,” said Hamilton.
“It was a real struggle today so to come out with the win I’m extremely grateful.”
It isn’t just the race in Azerbaijan that has had its fair share of crazy collisions but the qualifying session also brings plenty of drama too.
In 2019, Charles Leclerc was the firm favourite to take pole after an impressive practice session that saw him amongst the fastest on the grid.
But Leclerc was unable to continue that flying start for Ferrari and in Q2 went crashing into the barriers at Turn 8 before lamenting himself for the incident.
“I am stupid,” was the message to his Ferrari team and Leclerc continued to rue the mistake speaking to Sky Sports F1 afterwards.
“I’ve been stupid. I will push to learn from this and come back stronger and hopefully have a very good race tomorrow,” said Leclerc of the Turn Eight shunt.
“For the next three or four hours I will be beating myself up.”
Friday June 10
9:35 am: F2 Practice
10:25am: Driver’s Press Conference
11:40am: Practice One
1:25pm: F2 Qualifying
2:45pm: Practice Two
4:15pm: The F1 Show
Saturday June 11
10:20am: F2 Sprint
11:45am: Practice Three
2pm: Qualifying
Sunday June 12
8:30 am: F2 Feature Race
10:30 am: Grand Prix Sunday: Azerbaijan
2pm: Chequered Flag: Azerbaijan
3:30pm: Azerbaijan GP Highlights
©2022 Sky UK


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

You may also like