During the weekend of the 2022 Formula 1 Hungarian Grand Prix, a video went viral on social media showing a fan wearing what appeared to be an orange Max Verstappen t-shirt burning a black Mercedes cap. The incident came after something similar was seen at the last race in Austria , prompting Formula 1 to take steps to increase safety and launch a new campaign called “Drive It Out”.
After the test in Hungarian territory, the Dutch driver was asked to give his opinion on said recording, in which his followers could be seen burning Lewis Hamilton merchandising , and the reigning world champion described it as “unacceptable”.
“No, I don’t agree with what they do at all, it’s just disgusting,” Verstappen said. “In general, I think the majority of the public cheers the entire race and also the drivers on the podium, as I think it should be.”
“But those videos burning clothes seem disgusting to me,” said the Red Bull man to settle the issue.
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton starred in a fierce fight for the world title in the 2021 season, and the actions on the track turned to messages on social networks, with a rivalry that went to the next level between the respective fans during the grand prix.
At Silverstone last July, when the Dutchman spun in qualifying, the crowd applauded what happened to him, and was then booed in post-session interviews. Although Verstappen wanted to ignore what happened, Hamilton urged his followers to stop, assuring that “they were better than that”.
A week later in Austria , a race attended by more than 50,000 Dutch fans, applause was heard when the seven-time British champion crashed in qualifying on Friday, something the driver himself described as “shocking”.
Reports of behavior and harassment by various fans at the Red Bull Ring led to condemnation from Formula 1 drivers and teams, in addition to the launch of the “Drive It Out” campaign, with the aim of combating and prohibit such attitudes.
This was launched accompanied by a video in which the members of the grid dedicated a few words about this type of behavior, and intends to take a step in the sport to define new measures that guarantee the safety of the fans in the great prizes.