Verstappen caught out by wind in practice crash

Max Verstappen

Max Verstappen has attributed his crash in Friday practice at the Austrian Grand Prix to the windy conditions at the Red Bull Ring.

The Dutchman was on a flying lap during Practice 2 when he lost the back end of his RB15 through the final corner of the circuit, damaging the rear of the car.

Verstappen said he was struggling with the windy conditions during his earlier laps.

“I was already complaining all my laps about the wind,” he said.

“It had been really tricky, and some places I was losing the rear.

“I got into that corner and then suddenly you can see on the data that the rear turned around.

“This year, the cars in general are more sensitive to the wind, as you can also see with Valtteri (Bottas) who at one point just lost it.”

Bottas also came to grief during the session when he lost control of his Mercedes at Turn 6.

The Finn tried to correct his slide, sending himself into the gravel run-off before hitting the outside barrier head-on at significant speed.

Despite being unable to return to the track due to heavy damage, Bottas said that he would rather that circuits that punish drivers for their mistakes.

The sentiment is especially pertinent given that Formula 1 last weekend raced at Circuit Paul Ricard, which has expansive sealed run-off areas.

“It makes a difference. Even though I crashed I do prefer to be penalised for the mistakes. It makes it more exciting,” he said.

“I think that is how it should be and definitely mistakes here cost a lot with aggressive kerbs and minimal runs-off and everything.”

The cars return for Practice 3 at 2000 AEST before Qualifying at 2300 AEST.

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