Fernando Alonso believes Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton each deserved to be topped as Formulation One world champion after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – and has instructed the trophy be “break up in two”.
The 2021 season got here to an finish in vastly controversial circumstances on Sunday as Purple Bull’s Verstappen narrowly pipped Hamilton to the world title.
Verstappen took benefit of some questionable calls from FIA race director Michael Masi to overhaul Mercedes driver Hamilton on the ultimate lap on the Yas Marina Circuit.
Talking after the race, two-time world champion Alonso mentioned neither driver deserved to lose out on the world title after an enthralling season.
Talking about Verstappen, Alpine’s Alonso mentioned: “I feel he’s a champion, it was a matter of time that he received the trophy.
“I feel at the moment he was fortunate – with out the protection automotive Lewis was world champion, and with the protection automotive Max is world champion.
“So it’s a pure luck factor what occurred at the moment.
“It’s going to be a giant subject I suppose, however for those who take the 22 races, as I mentioned on Thursday, any of the 2 may very well be world champion.
“I feel greater than some other yr for those who might break up the trophy in two, this was the yr to do it. As a result of each of them had been excellent.”
In response to reviews, Masi is now going through the sack over his determination to permit 5 vehicles to unlap themselves throughout a security automotive within the closing levels of the race – successfully permitting Verstappen to wipe out an 11-second hole to race chief Hamilton.
Masi then allowed the race to renew with one lap remaining, with Verstappen – on more energizing tyres – managing to cross Hamilton in a straight shootout for the title.
After the race, Mercedes lodged two separate protests which had been later rejected by Formulation One stewards.
Nonetheless, Mercedes have since lodged their intention to attraction the verdicts.
“Toto despatched me a textual content [saying] congratulations on the season, I deserved to win it,” Verstappen advised Sky Sports activities.
“That was good of him in fact, feelings ran very excessive by means of that final lap from either side of each groups.”
Verstappen’s victory denied Hamilton a record-breaking eighth Formulation One world title, with the Mercedes driver as a substitute remaining degree with Michael Schumacher on seven.
In a message heard over the Mercedes workforce radio throughout the last lap, Hamilton claimed the race was being “manipulated”.
Nonetheless, Verstappen says his rival has been gracious in defeat – describing the British driver as a “nice sportsman”.
“In fact it helps that you simply even have seven titles, I feel that comforts him a bit,” Verstappen added.
“I feel if it was the opposite manner round, it might have been extra painful for me, as a result of I did not have one!”
He added of Hamilton: “Lewis has been a fantastic sportsman basically.
“He got here as much as me, congratulated me and it should have been very powerful in that final lap. It additionally reveals the respect we had for one another, basically.
“In fact we had our powerful instances by means of the season however in the long run we had been respectful of what we had been doing and we had been pushing one another to the restrict the entire season.
“It has been actually gratifying racing towards him.”