Max Verstappen must grow up, says Sir Jackie Stewart

GROW UP! Max Verstappen is ‘taking longer than expected to mature’, blasts Sir Jackie Stewart after Dutchman didn’t even check if Lewis Hamilton was OK when he cheated death in their crash

  • Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton crashed out of the Italian Grand Prix
  • Verstappen’s car almost landed on Hamilton’s head after collision on lap 26 
  • The Dutchman received a three-place grid penalty for the Russian Grand Prix
  • Sir Jackie Stewart tells Sportsmail that the Red Bull driver needs to grow up

Sir Jackie Stewart believes Max Verstappen has some growing up to do after his explosive crash with Lewis Hamilton.

The Formula One legend was disappointed to see Verstappen walk away without stopping to check if Hamilton was OK after his car almost clattered into the Briton’s head at Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix. But Stewart does not believe the Dutchman, 23, who was held responsible by the stewards, was entirely to blame.

The smash came two months after Verstappen was concussed following a 180mph coming together at Silverstone. Hamilton was handed a 10-second penalty for that incident, but Verstappen, who leads his rival by five points in the table, will serve a three-place grid penalty in Sochi a week on Sunday.

Sir Jackie Stewart believes Max Verstappen has some growing up to do after his latest crash

Verstappen (left) and Lewis Hamilton (right – seen in Spain in May) have a bitter rivalry brewing

Stewart told Sportsmail: ‘Verstappen is taking longer than expected to mature. Not even to go to see Hamilton after a serious accident when you have just driven over the top of the guy is something I don’t really understand. Especially when he is still in his car and remained there for a long time before getting out. 

‘Max has quite a lot to learn. But who will he listen to?

‘He’s very, very good. He’s probably the fastest driver on the grid now, but to be a proper champion you cannot be entangling yourself in crashes all the time. 

Hamilton was saved from serious injury by the protective Halo device on his Mercedes car

‘If I were their team principals, I’d tell them, “For Christ’s sake, don’t do it again”. Just because you are leading the world championship, it doesn’t mean you are bulletproof.’

Stewart, who did more than any other driver to revolutionise safety in motor racing, thinks both men took unnecessary risks at a dangerous spot.

‘The stewards have more information, but if they were so certain Verstappen was entirely to blame then why does he only get a three-place penalty? 

‘If it weren’t for the halo, Lewis could have died, and the supposed culprit only gets a slap on the wrist!’

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