The row over Sky’s alleged bias and diminishing of Red Bull driver Max Verstappen’s achievements rumbles on. The entire Red Bull team refused to appear of Sky following comments made by the broadcaster’s pit lane reporter, Ted Kravitz.
Red Bull believe Kravitz persists with a trope that Lewis Hamilton was ‘robbed’ by the decisions made by F1 race director Michael Massi in last seasons finale in Abu Dhabi which decided the drivers’ world championship. Whether Sky accept it or not there is a clear implication that Hamilton should have won the 2021 season and Max was not a worthy champion.
Max feels disrespected by Kravitz
When asked by a different broadcaster about the Sky UK, Italy and Germany boycott Verstappen explained: “This year it’s been a constant… yeah, kind of like daily being disrespectful, especially one particular person. And it’s enough, I don’t accept it.”
“You keep disrespecting me, and at one point, I’m not tolerating it anymore. That’s why I decided to stop answering them.”
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner now reveals he backs his star driver’s stance and labelled Kravitz words as “Derogatory, sensationalist and unbalanced.”
“Max was very upset about it. We were equally upset about it. I took the decision that we’ll have a weekend off. Service will be resumed in Brazil.”
Brundle wades in on twitter
Surprisingly Martin Brundle has eased into the row defending his co-presenter Kravitz.
For the avoidance of doubt my friend and colleague for the past 26 years @tedkravitz has my full support. Face to face dialogue is the only way to sort out issues and disputes in the relentless crucible of the F1 paddock. We all have opinions and different jobs to do, that’s life
— Martin Brundle (@MBrundleF1) November 1, 2022
“For the avoidance of doubt my friend and colleague for the past 26 years Ted Kravitz has my full support,” he posted on Twitter.
“Face to face dialogue is the only way to sort out issues and disputes in the relentless crucible of the F1 paddock. We all have opinions and different jobs to do, that’s life.”
Brundle: Verstappen a worthy winner
Yet following the thrilling Abu Dhabi 2021 finale Martin wrote in his Sky column, “Does Max deserve the championship? Of course he does.”
“He led 652 laps compared with Lewis’ 303 laps. He departed 15 of the 22 races leading the championship including the last seven. He won 10 races compared to eight for Lewis (yes I know, we’ll get onto that shortly), and it was 18 podiums playing 17.”
“And he didn’t have the best of luck along the way, until the last few miles of course.”
Flashback to 2008 last lap thriller
Brundle also did a piece at the 2021 Brazilian GP reviewing the 2008 Sau Paulo race where again the title was won on the last lap of the last GP of the year.
Felipe Massa won the race and with Hamilton behind Timo Glock he was set to fall short of the points he required to win the drivers’ championship.
Yet at the last corner proper on the San Paulo circuit, Hamilton overtook Glock and for some it appeared the German had made it all too easy for his friend Lewis.
Seconds later Hamilton took the chequered flag and there was a feeling amongst the fans of the Brazilian driver that he’d been ‘robbed’.
Cue the commentary! #F1 @LewisHamilton pic.twitter.com/nzGgvGhurn
— Formula 1 (@F1) November 2, 2022
Glock accused of giving Hamilton title
Brundle assembled Massa and Glock at the 2021 Brazilian GP where the German ex-F1 driver admitted “There are still people out there that think I did it on purpose.”
The segment was concluded with Brundle speaking to camera where he summarised that F1 driver titles are not won or lost at one race, but over the entire season. “Let’s remember a championship is won over a season, not just one race, ” said Brundle.
How prophetic those words came to be at the very next race weekend.
TJ13 previously: Red Bull Sky boycott row deepens
Was Felipe Massa ‘robbed’?
Clearly Brundle’s on statistics above demonstrate Verstappen had been on top for most of the 2021 season and must accept talk of Lewis’ being ‘robbed’ has echoes of the 2007 season where maybe Felipe Massa was then ‘robbed’ by Lewis and Timo Glock.
Given that Christian Horner now reveals the boycott by Red Bull of Sky F1 was just for the Mexican GP, the matter will probably not be talked out and the row will dissipate.
That said it was embarrassing for the British broadcaster not to have the winner of the Mexican GP on their stage for the post race show.
READ MORE: Lewis Hamilton contract talks on hold
Red Bull’s sensitivity reveals how the team views the result and their own ethos, like dictators shutting down opposition media
What utter CRAP! Read the statistics – Max was undoubtedly the most successful driver in 2021 (as in 2022) and its totally PATHETIC to keep harping back to it. Kravitz WAS sensationalising – and I’d like to think he might have learned a lesson which no post-race talk with the winner n Mexico … but somehow I doubt he will have: he’s spurred on by these sort of comments. SO childish!
Spot on! These whining Crymilton supporters just cannot understand that Ted Kravitz, the A HOLE who keeps discrediting and insulting RB and Max, is just another bitter woke little scumbag who achieved nothing in life by being honest. Martin Brundle also achieved nothing in F1, he just filled space and has been an oxygen thieve after retiring as a LOOOOOSER!
Stop with the BS. Statistic does not win a competition but a higher accumulation of points. Simply being the best team in a competition does not automatically make you a champion. You must, like everyone else , score the highest amount of point to wear that crown. In sport of boxing for example, a boxer can lead in the score card from the opening bell to the last round but get knocked out with one punch and loose the fight. The statistics then does not matter. In Abu dabi max was getting his ass handed to him but the FIA Harry pottered a new rule and handed the championship to him. It was clear as day for everyone to see.
That is wishful thinking! Whatever Red Bull may have done to that car with the extra spending does not explain how Max wins from the middle of the grid and generally gets ahead of other drivers regardless; other drivers that have repeatedly done that in the past have always become world champion. The car is not that much faster than the Ferrari, maybe a one to two 10ths. Yet he wins by 15 seconds or more! those numbers just don’t stack up, so it cannot all be explained by a better car. Max is a very talented driver, on a par with Lewis and Alonso. I have no doubt Alonso would have won more championships had it not been for his poor choices. Only time will tell, but if I had to bet, my money would be on Max taking most of the records before he retires, he has age on his side. That does not mean his is better than Lewis, but he is as good, and that is that he needs to do it.
Shame, little Crymilton supporter, for the past 2 years your stupid liberal Sky sport used every opportunity to discredit Max and RB. F Sky and martin brundle, who achieved NOTHING in F1, NOTHING! SO, be quiet, Ted Kravits is just a wannabe and an absolute W@NK3R
I think it is the role of a commentator to take a reasonably neutral stance when it comes to both drivers and teams. Both Crofty and Kravitz are clearly very biased in favour of Lewis Hamilton, something that has been commented on by fans many times in the past. I suppose that is somewhat understandable given that Lewis is a British driver, although the other British commentators do seem much less biased generally.
While Ted is entitled to offer his personal opinions, it does come across as unprofessional and churlish to keep commenting about what happened at the end of last year at every possible opportunity. I think as long as this was only a one race boycott, then MV and RB have done the right thing and hopefully Ted will be more circumspect in the future and can refrain further comment on the subject.
This reminds me of those people that voted remain at the Brexit referendum and have still not accepted the result six year on. It is not necessary to like something in order to be able to accept it and move on.