Verstappen and Ocon's Vegas 'mess' demanded bigger reaction
Sat 18, Nov, 2023
Source: The Race

Max Verstappen and Esteban Ocon added another flashpoint to their litany of run-ins during the first part of Formula 1 qualifying at the Las Vegas Grand Prix.

The broadcast showed replays of a huge cluster of cars all going slowly in the final sector and then Verstappen overtaking Ocon into Turn 1 while they were both on flying laps.

But what actually happened, what did some of those involved make of it and why did the stewards fail to even note it let alone investigate it?


With track evolution quite extreme on a brand-new circuit the final laps of Q1 were always going to be the laps that decided who missed the cut and who didn’t.

Verstappen was third-fastest at this stage and effectively well clear of elimination but Red Bull wanted to ensure he wasn’t caught out by any last-minute track evolution and sudden improvements.

The likes of Alpine driver Ocon and the Alfa Romeo of Zhou Guanyu were 15th and 16th so they needed a big improvement to make it to Q2.

Verstappen was conducting a typically slow prep lap in the RB19 and had several cars behind him.