Sebastian Vettel was quick to apologise to Max Verstappen after the four-time world champion crashed into the Dutchman in the closing stages of Sunday’s British Grand Prix.
Red Bull’s Verstappen was on a late charge with a podium spot within range. But after passing the Ferrari driver around the outside of Stowe corner, the pair collided when Vettel braked too late, sending both into the gravel.
While both were able to continue, Vettel needed to p-ut to replace his front wing, and then received a 10-second penalty, dropping him to 16th, Verstappen was able to recover somewhat to finish fifth, despite huge damage to the rear of his car.
“It was my mistake,” Vettel said. “He passed me into Stowe, he ran a bit wide which gave me the chance to run back. Then it looked for a second he was going to the right and I went to the left, but it didn’t open and it was already too late and I crashed.”
Verstappen accepted Vettel’s apology, but said he was disappointed to miss out on a podium finish at Red Bull’s second home race in a row.
He said: “It’s a shame for everyone in the team to lose a podium here as the car felt very good and we were so quick in the race.
“The battles with Charles Leclerc were hard but fair and he was defending really well. I didn’t want to risk too much as the race was still very long and we were clearly faster, so it was just a matter of choosing the right time and it was great fun.”
Where Verstappen lost out though, team-mate Pierre Gasly capitalised and picked up his best finish for Red Bull.
With speculation mounting surrounding his future at Tilbrook, Gasly showed his pace by leading the way in FP1 on Friday, before an assured race on Sunday saw him mix it with the Ferraris, claiming fourth spot at Silverstone.
“This whole weekend has been strong, with today being my best Sunday of the year. We’re fighting with the guys at the front which is where we should be and I’m really happy with fourth.
“As a competitive guy I’m disappointed not to get on the podium as it was so close but we’ve made a big step this weekend and we’re working in the right direction.”