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Verstappen unrepentant over Spa driving style despite Ferrari criticism

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Max Verstappen has no plans to change his driving style despite facing criticism from Ferrari drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel following clashes in last weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix.

Verstappen clashed with Raikkonen and Vettel at Turn 1 at Spa, leaving all three with damage that compromised their races.

Verstappen came under fire for a later incident involving Raikkonen where he appeared to move in the braking zone and forced the Finn off-track at one point while defending his position.

The incidents prompted angry responses from both Vettel and Raikkonen, who said that talks with Verstappen may be required to curb his aggressive on-track antics.

However, Verstappen is not willing to dwell on the past and won’t be making any changes to his driving style in response to the criticism offered.

“To be honest, for me Spa is done,” Verstappen said.

“I think in general it was a great weekend. I enjoyed it a lot, especially to see so many fans to come to the track with the orange colours, it was amazing to see.

“So for me, what happened in the race, that can happen sometimes. Just focus ahead to Monza.

“I’ll try to push again and just do my thing, and show my driving style like it was before.”

Verstappen believes that all three drivers involved in the clash can learn from it, before putting it down as a racing incident.

“It happens sometimes in a race. The stewards didn’t give any penalty to any one of us,” Verstappen said.

“That’s fine, I think we all learned from it as well. Even when you are a very experienced driver you can still learn.

“It’s about what we can learn from it to do different next time. I don’t know what we should have done different, maybe we should have given a bit more space.

“From my side, it was a bit difficult to give more space. It can happen. It was a kind of unlucky situation because Sebastian didn’t see what was on the inside of Kimi.”

Verstappen’s aggressive defence was compared to that of Michael Schumacher during his battle with Mika Hakkinen back in 2000, prompting outcry from the latter.

“I think Michael is still a seven-time world champion…” was Verstappen’s response when asked about the comparison.

Alex Zanardi showing signs of interaction three months after crash

Alex Zanardi recovery
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MILAN — Italian racing driver turned Paralympic gold medalist Alex Zanardi has started responding to treatment with signs of interaction, more than three months after he was seriously injured in a handbike crash.

Zanardi has spent most of that time in intensive care after crashing into an oncoming truck during a relay event near the Tuscan town of Pienza on June 19.

“For several days now. Alex Zanardi has undergone cognitive and motor rehabilitation sessions, with the administration of visual and acoustic stimuli, to which the patient responds with momentary and initial signs of interaction,” the San Raffaele hospital in Milan said in a statement Thursday.

The hospital said that is “significant progress” but added that his condition remains serious, and that it would be “absolutely premature” to make a long-term prognosis.

Zanardi, 53, suffered serious facial and cranial trauma in the crash and was put in a medically induced coma. Doctors have warned of possible brain damage.

He was operated on several times to stabilize him and reconstruct his severely damaged face and the Milan hospital added that he recently had undergone another surgery to reconstruct his skull and would have another one in the coming weeks.

Zanardi lost both of his legs in an auto racing crash nearly 20 years ago. He won four gold medals and two silvers at the 2012 and 2016 Paralympics. He also competed in the New York City Marathon and set an Ironman record in his class.