Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen were involved in a crash at the Italian Grand Prix that ended with Max’s Red Bull running over Lewis’ Mercedes. Even worse, the Dutch driver’s rear right tyre drove over Lewis’ helmet.
After the incident Lewis said his neck was sore and added he would have it checked before the Russian Grand Prix.
This prompted some critics to question the extent of Lewis’ injuries, saying he was “overdramatizing”. Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko went a step further and criticized Lewis for attending the Met Gala in New York the day after the incident.
Ahead of the Russian Grand Prix Hamilton was asked to comment on these statements.
“I don’t really listen to what these individuals talk about,” the Briton said.
“I mean, it is natural when a car lands on your head you are going to have some discomfort. As I said, I definitely felt some pain after the race and I said I was going to get it checked out.
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“I worked with Angela [Cullen, his physiotherapist] after the race and during the flight, had checkups the next day and just worked on it through the week with acupuncture and everything.
“I didn’t say I was dying. Of course, aware of the fact that in just a millisecond anything can happen, [I’m] so grateful to come out of it not badly injured. We move on.”
Lewis was also asked if he was concerned about potential future incident between him and Max.
“I am just not putting any energy towards that, I am just focusing on putting all the energy into moving forwards.
“Naturally we are battling for a championship. I remember what it was like battling for my first championship and now I am fighting my 10th battle or something like that.
“I remember what it was like and I know the pressure that comes with it and the experiences that go with it so I can empathise with that. I think what is important is we continue to race hard and fair.
“I have no doubts we can both be professional and learn from the past,” concluded the seven-time champion.