'We would have crashed' - Verstappen backs Rosberg's penalty


Max Verstappen believes Nico Rosberg was at fault after a collision between the pair resulted in a race-wrecking penalty for the Mercedes man at the German Grand Prix.

Pole-sitter Rosberg finished fourth in Hockenheim after a tangle with Verstappen at turn six was punished with a five-second time penalty.

The Dutchman finished third behind Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo as Lewis Hamilton romped to victory, opening up a 19-point advantage over Rosberg.

After a likely second-place finish slipped through his fingers, Rosberg was critical of the race stewards, but Verstappen believes his adversary was in the wrong - as he was when judged to be at fault for a similar collision with Hamilton in Austria.

"Well, I think pretty sure that he was quite far [behind], so he braked really late," Verstappen said.

"At one point I thought he was going to run into me so I opened up and then he didn't turn in, he was just driving straight so I had to go off the track otherwise we would have crashed. 

"That's not very handy. Lewis knows. 

"That happened and he got a five-second penalty, so for me it was just trying to stay within these five seconds to get him back after the pit stop."

Verstappen had to give up second place to Ricciardo as he failed to replicate the Australian's pace on super soft tyres while running on the harder compound.

"I definitely think I took one for the team today," he added. "But that's alright.

"I think Daniel and I have a good relationship so we can do that. 

"The most important thing was for us to be in front of Ferrari. That definitely worked today and we were even challenging Mercedes. We kept Nico behind us on fair pace, so that was good.

"You have to earn that trust as well, because I'm quite new still. For the team it was a very positive day."

Red Bull's two-three finish put them into second place in the constructors' standings.

"It's nice to go on the summer break with a result I'm happy with," Ricciardo said. 

"Two weekends in a row now it's a podium and, for the team, we're now second in the Constructors' so I think we can be really proud, both of us, to split the Mercedes today. It's a really good effort."