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2018 F1

Horner’s situation, he would go home and cry – Lauda

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Red Bull’s drivers should have to pay for the damage to their cars after colliding in Baku.

That is the view of Niki Lauda, whose fellow Mercedes chief Toto Wolff said after the clash on Sunday that F1 drivers “sometimes go too far”.

“I’ve been in Christian (Horner’s) position,” Wolff said after Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen crashed.

“On the one hand you want two equal drivers who are not afraid to fight. But we have to remind them that hundreds of people work 24 hours a day to give them the car,” he added.

Lauda, the Mercedes team chairman, said that in Horner’s situation, he would “go home and cry”.

“My view is that Verstappen is 70 per cent guilty, Ricciardo 30 per cent guilty. You cannot move like that in a straight line. Eventually the poor guy had nowhere to go.

“What would I do? I would bring them to my office and make them pay for the repairs,” Lauda added.

However, Horner and fellow Red Bull chief Dr Helmut Marko would not apportion blame, saying both drivers were now in the “doghouse” and would have to apologise.

As for Lauda’s suggestion of a financial penalty, Horner answered: “Niki thinks about the financial side more often than most of us in the paddock.

“For us the most important thing for Daniel and Max to realise is that it was completely unacceptable.”

He said Red Bull’s philosophy is always to let the drivers fight, but “We will discuss it before Barcelona”.

F1 race director Charlie Whiting admitted “both drivers could have acted more circumspectly”, while Ricciardo said the incident won’t damage his relationship with Verstappen.

“We are not angry with one another,” said the Australian. “We just want to apologise to the team. It’s all we can do.”

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