Is Hamilton and Verstappen heading down the same dark path as Hamilton?

Formula 1 heads to Sochi this weekend for the Russian Grand Prix. While the venue of the Winter Olympics is not the most inspiring, all eyes will be on what happens between Lewis Hamilton and Max Vertappen.

These two immovable objects collided again at Monza, and crashed together like they did at Silverstone. Although it was happening at a slower speed, Hamilton was saved by the safety bars ‘halo’ above his cockpit.

Motorsport is a high-stakes sport. However, if respect between rivals becomes too weak, it can lead to deadly consequences.

We were here before

Silverstone stewards blamed Hamilton for the Copse collision, but Hamilton won the British GP with a 10-second penalty. Verstappen was “predominantly at fault” at Monza. However, with Red Bull’s nose digging gravel, Verstappen had no choice but to win this race.

Your opinion will be different. Toto Wolff’s “tactical folly” accusation was, in my opinion, a low blow. It also shows how toxic it has become between Red Bull and Mercedes-AMG camps.

His rhetorical question, “How far can you go?” was true. There are a number of minor incidents as well as two major clashes among the title protagonists. But there is a common theme to all of them. These two F1 drivers respect each other but they lack trust. The rivalry between the Poles has reached a boiling point, and neither side will be able to stop the other when it comes down to the final push. That’s where Senna versus Prost territory begins.

They have it

Hamilton, 36, is more mature than Verstappen at 23 years old, thanks to all his wins and titles. Hamilton is Verstappen’s Senna’s Prost. Evidence shows that he can see the larger picture in the heat of battle.

Hamilton, like Prost has his limits. The pair was unable to avoid an accident when they touched at Monza’s second chicane.

Hamilton didn’t want to be second-guessed when Verstappen won the Rettifilo chicane on lap 26. Hamilton squeezed more space than he would for anyone else at the Rettifilo chicane, which is a ridiculously tight place that has always caused contact during dogfights.

Both could have avoided the collision but they chose not to. The fact that Verstappen was given a three-place grid penalty at this weekend’s Sochi grand Prix will make it difficult for him to win in Russia, particularly since overtaking here is more difficult than at Monza.

Will the threat of punishment convince him to think twice about if he and his partner find themselves again racing for the same track? It is unlikely, even with a world title at stake. What would the consequences be if this happens for the third time?

The championship points are still five points apart so the Monza collision did not have any impact on the season’s outcome. It could be the clincher if one of them scores and escapes, like at Silverstone.

It’s possible that it will happen again without both sides changing their attitude. Verstappen is as aggressive as Senna and won’t let it go. Hamilton, like Prost has earned respect for his ability to race cleanly – but he won’t be intimidated. Penalties, rules of racing and team boss pep talk only go so far. To avoid a disaster, these two must come to an agreement.

Is there enough respect or is it a sign of a crisis? Senna and Prost were involved in Suzuka 1990, which was the most scandalous moment in F1 history. This was a tactical foul and it must not happen again. Fate does not exist. They have no choice. What are you doing to make your name remembered, guys?

On the right path

It is strange to feel odd about McLaren winning the grand prix. It had been nine years and 170 race since Jenson Button won Brazil’s GP 2012. So Daniel Ricciardo’s unexpected win at Monza – Lando Norris also making it a team 1-2 – was a happy result that was in stark contrast to the wrangling over the Hamilton-Verstappen clash.

Despite Mercedes-AMG’s eight-year success, McLaren is still second to Ferrari in F1 wins: McLaren has 283 Prancing Horse victories to Ferrari’s 183 and McLaren has 119. McLaren is not considered an F1 winner today, despite such a barren spell – still short of Ligier’s 15-year gap between Jacques Laffite’s win at the Canadian GP in 1981 and Olivier Panis’s victory at Monaco in 1996 – It’s odd to say that.

Will that change now?

Is McLaren really back? Boss Zak Brown, team principal Andreas Seidl, were wise to point out that the team still has a lot of work to do before it can win consistently. Their success in implementing the new regulations 2022 will be crucial. McLaren’s success in 2022 is evident by Monza and his team’s third-best performance this year. This is not surprising.