Max Verstappen warned during interview after brutal reaction to Charles Leclerc failure

Sergio Perez extends contract with Red Bull Racing until 2024

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Max Verstappen faced the wrath of an interview moderator after stretching his Drivers’ Championship advantage over Charles Leclerc by winning the Azerbaijan Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon. The Dutchman only started from third place but ultimately managed to take the chequered flag after both Ferrari drivers were forced to retire with separate mechanical problems.

Carlos Sainz was hit with a hydraulic issue during the early stages of the 51-lap contest before pole-sitter Leclerc, who was leading the race, followed suit with a power unit failure of his own. Verstappen did not express any sympathy for the latter, though, when asked for his thoughts on what happened after the race in Baku.

“S*** happens,” replied the Red Bull driver. “It happened to me too and is part of racing. After that, it is important as a team to ensure that it does not happen again.”

Verstappen was then warned to keep his answers clean by the moderator, to which he replied: “Come on, that’s not really a swear!” The press conference was then brought to a close, prompting Verstappen to joke that he will simply curse much earlier at the next time of asking in order to escape his post-race media duties.

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Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether Ferrari will be able to solve their early-season reliability issues in order to revive Leclerc’s fading hopes of securing Drivers’ Championship glory at the end of the campaign. The 24-year-old was over 40 points clear of Verstappen after the first three Grands Prix of the year but now finds himself adrift of both Red Bull drivers in the standings after experiencing plenty of bad luck over the last few weeks.

Leclerc will be desperate to reach the chequered flag when F1 returns to Canada this weekend as he looks to put himself back in contention for the end-of-season honours with a much-needed positive result. He struggled to find the right words to sum up his disappointment after his latest unfortunate setback in Azerbaijan, which marked his second major power unit failure of the year.

“We’ve been fast and we didn’t have particularly big problems in the first part of the season,” he told Sky Sports F1.

“Now, it seems that we have a bit more compared to the beginning of the season, when we didn’t change anything. If anything, we made the thing better.

“So it’s difficult to understand for now, but we will have to analyse obviously. I don’t have the full picture of what happened today.

“It hurts, we really need to look into it for that to not happen again. I don’t really find the right words to describe obviously, it’s very, very disappointing.”

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