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F1 | Hungarian GP | Verstappen: The behaviour of fans burning Hamilton merchandise is “disgusting”

Max Verstappen declares that the conduct of orange army fans burning Lewis Hamilton merchandise at the Hungarian Grand Prix is "disgusting".

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F1 | Hungarian GP | Verstappen: The behaviour of fans burning Hamilton merchandise is “disgusting”
Fuente imagen: Red Bull Content Pool

Footage emerged from the Hungarian Grand Prix over the weekend that Max Verstappen Orange Army were once again burning Lewis Hamilton merchandise at a Grand Prix event.

This comes on the back of the new Formula One ‘Drive it Out’ campaign launched over the weekend, that’s focussed on a greater respect, and stamping out abuse in the sport, online and at events.

In the post-race press conference, Red Bull Racing driver Verstappen talked to media about the shocking scenes from his fans at the Hungaroring over the weekend:

“Yeah, that's of course not acceptable. I mean, these individuals… No, I definitely don't agree with that because that's just disgusting.

“But overall, I think the majority of the fans which also were cheering a lot, I think throughout the race and also on the podium for every driver, I think that's how it should be. And yeah, those videos, or video, of burning merch I think that's disgusting.”

Verstappen states in the ‘Drive it Out’ campaign video: “We are united and ask you to join us in driving this out.” And Hamilton says: “We cannot let those who think they can abuse others get away with it.”

Just a few weeks ago, the Orange Army at the Red Bull Ring tarnished the weekend with similar scenes, and alleged racist and homophobic abuse, during the Austrian Grand Prix weekend. 

The burning of Hamilton merchandise has underlying sinister connotations, and following the launch of the new 'Drive it Out' campaign, hopefully the FIA will take action over the group, or individual people, who persist in challenging the message Formula One is encouraging.

Verstappen enjoyed an unexpected race win at the Hungaroring, after power unit issues looked to scupper his chances of a points scoring race. The 2021 World Champion started the Hungarian Grand Prix in 10th place, and fought his way through the field, even spinning 360º on the circuit after his Lap 39 pit stop. 

The Ferrari team looked favourites to dominate and win. But tyre choice and the car’s performance weren’t as good as expected which meant the two Mercedes cars of Hamilton and George Russell took the second and third spots on the podium.

Mercedes have showed vast improvement compared to the beginning of the season, with a double podium last time out in France. Verstappen was asked by if the Brackley based team’s recent results are a threat to his Championship campaign.

"No, it's good that they are competitive because then they can steal more points off Ferrari. So I'm very happy. They’re doing very well.” 

Verstappen comfortably leads the Championship ahead of Charles Leclerc by 80 points, as Formula One heads into the summer break.

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