Max Verstappen mentioned on Wednesday he felt just like the Formula One world champion and any move by Mercedes to try to take away the title in courtroom wouldn’t change that.
The 24-year-old Red Bull driver denied Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton an eighth crown in a controversial decider in Abu Dhabi on Sunday after a sudden change of the protection automotive process performed into the Dutch teenager’s palms on the final lap.
Mercedes had till Thursday to attraction after post-race protests have been dismissed.
“I do feel like the world champion,” the Dutch driver instructed reporters in a video name after a manufacturing unit homecoming when requested in regards to the danger of attorneys getting concerned.
“It doesn’t matter what they try to do. We won it on track, when there was a green light and we passed them on the track. And they will never be able to take that away from me anyway. About the possible appeal, I’m not busy with that.”
Team boss Christian Horner mentioned it was time to move on.
The fast indications, nevertheless, have been that Mercedes — whose bosses have mentioned nothing since Sunday — have been nonetheless seething at what they take into account a manipulated end result that robbed Hamilton of a file title.
Hamilton, who led the race till that final lap, collected his knighthood at Windsor Castle on Wednesday and mentioned nothing to media.
“We’ve welcomed Max home to the team today as the world champion,” mentioned Horner. “We’re looking forward to seeing him pick up the trophy tomorrow evening as the world champion.”
Asked whether or not Red Bull would possibly pull out of the game if Mercedes have been to win an attraction, Horner selected his phrases fastidiously. “If the unthinkable were to happen, we would challenge that in the appropriate manner,” he mentioned.
The Briton added that he had sought out Mercedes group boss Toto Wolff after the race however the Austrian was unavailable. Ola Kaellenius, head of Mercedes-Benz, did supply his congratulations, nevertheless.
Wolff despatched a textual content later within the night, as he did additionally to Verstappen, congratulating Red Bull on the drivers’ championship. “I congratulated him on winning the constructors’ world championship and reminded him that’s where the money’s paid, not the drivers’. I haven’t spoken with him since,” added Horner.
Mercedes received the group title for the eighth yr in a row. Horner mentioned Mercedes’ dispute was with the governing International Automobile Federation (FIA) and race director Michael Masi and never Red Bull, who did nothing mistaken however have been an occasion.