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Max Verstappen accuses Lando Norris of showing him ‘lack of respect’ as he is reprimanded in Japanese GP qualifying

, Max Verstappen accuses Lando Norris of showing him ‘lack of respect’ as he is reprimanded in Japanese GP qualifying

MAX VERSTAPPEN accused Lando Norris of showing him a lack of “respect” as the two had a narrow escape in qualifying for the Japanese GP.

The flashpoint happened when Verstappen slowed down on the racing line before lighting up his tyres with a wheelspin.

Max Verstappen celebrates pole position ahead of Ferrari duo Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz

Verstappen, who has never won in Japan looked chuffed after achieving pole position

But Norris, who was already up to speed, was forced to take evasive action, running wide and onto the grass.

It earned Verstappen no more than a ticking off from the stewards yet he was adamant it would never have happened if Norris showed him more courtesy.

He said: “We were on our out lap and we were all lining up to create a gap to everyone and then somehow he still wanted to get me into the chicane.

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“I was on the point of accelerating and I was on very cold tyres, so I had a little moment and that’s why he had to drive around me.

“But if he had just a bit more respect for me, because everyone is anyway lining up and I don’t think anyone is trying to pass into that last chicane, so by trying to pass me you create that kind of thing.”

On the other hand, Norris felt the Dutchman deliberately tried to block him during his qualifying lap, and the McLaren driver had expected Verstappen to be punished for the dangerous manoeuvre.

He said: “I mean it was quite clear he tried to do that. There’s no rule on doing what you can do, but doing what he did is something that you cannot do.

“People always overtake before the last corner as much as everyone all agrees to it everyone always does it.

“He probably would have done the same if he was in my situation but wouldn’t have swerved at him if I was in his situation.”

Asked whether he would expect a penalty if he had been the guilty party, he added: “Oh yeah for sure.”

Verstappen’s outburst comes as he and his Red Bull team await their fate with the FIA announcing their findings into F1 cost-cap investigation.

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It is widely believed that Red Bull have over-spent and will face a penalty, which will be determined by the FIA.

And Norris’ boss at McLaren, Zak Brown, says any team who has surpassed the £114million limit should be penalised.

, Max Verstappen accuses Lando Norris of showing him ‘lack of respect’ as he is reprimanded in Japanese GP qualifyingThe Red Bull driver was forced to see the Stewards after the race but escaped with a reprimand

, Max Verstappen accuses Lando Norris of showing him ‘lack of respect’ as he is reprimanded in Japanese GP qualifying
Verstappen in discussion with Team Principal Christian Horner

He said: “The certificates were supposed to be distributed on Wednesday and they have now been postponed to Monday, which means for some reason they are not ready.

“You can, based on the speculation, assume a team or two haven’t complied. I don’t know that to be the case.

“Cost caps are critically important, and we need to make sure it is enforced (and) if someone has breached that, the appropriate penalties, not just financial, but sporting and technical, are put in place.

“If you bend the rules technically, you get penalties, and financials should be the same.

“Because if someone has overspent, then that gives them an on-track unfair advantage, and it needs to be dealt with accordingly firmly and quickly.”

Meanwhile, Pierre Gasly has signed for Alpine and will drive for the team from 2023.

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He will partner fellow Frenchman Esteban Ocon at the Oxfordshire based team – despite the two being far from mates.

The two fell out some years ago, despite growing up as friends, and Alpine boss Otmar Szafnauer is hopeful the duo will rekindle their friendship when they become team-mates.

He said: “We made an informed decision and that means talking to the entire team – including Esteban beforehand – to make sure that if we did make a decision it’s a team sport and we have to be able to work together and optimise.

“Esteban was very supportive, Pierre as well. They’re professionals and they have no issue working together.

“Hopefully the friendship will rekindle, they were friends at one point, but from a professional perspective they’re both very happy to work with each other.”

His departure has allowed AlphaTauri to sign Dutchman Nyck De Vries from under the noses of Williams, who had earmarked him as a replacement for Nicholas Latifi.

De Vries, who has been racing in Formula E and won last year’s title, has been handed his first shot in F1 by Red Bull’s B team.

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