Max Verstappen's father Jos has been condemned by over a post-race incident at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix that has been described as "unsportsmanlike" and "salty" by numerous Formula One fans. It came after the older Verstappen's son and reigning F1 champion finished second behind Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez to give their team a second straight one-two finish to start the new season.
Perez claimed victory after starting from pole, while Verstappen fought back from 15th on the grid to take second spot. Perez was briefly passed early on by Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso but never looked back en route to a fifth career win when he took the lead in lap four.
The celebrations for team Red Bull were in full swing after the race, as officials congratulated Perez on a well deserved victory. However, one man that didn't seem happy at all about the Mexican's victory was Verstappen's father.
Jos Verstappen getting caught up in the Sergio Perez celebrations 😅 pic.twitter.com/R8vXNNQ4Cw
— ESPN F1 (@ESPNF1) March 19, 2023
Jos Verstappen was standing amongst several members of the Red Bull team who were high-fiving Perez and congratulating him on the race win. When Perez approached though, he didn't even manage to crack a smile or offer any form of congratulations to his son's teammate.
In excruciatingly awkward scenes, Jos simply blanked Perez with a vacant expression on his face as everyone around him savoured the race victory. Commentators and fans were quick to make note of the incident, with many calling out Jos Verstappen on social media for the "petulant" act.
Jos Verstappen blanking Checo while all around him celebrate - how rude and unsportsmanlike. I know they have differences but to not congratulate him is petulant and not what #F1 is about - a really poor example to set to younger generations.
— Alex Duffy (@whatalexthinks) March 19, 2023
Jos Verstappen deserves absolutely nothing in this world.
Bad human being. pic.twitter.com/0R7AOYR03j
— Lewis (@mcmurray_23) March 19, 2023
— Carrie (@MissCarrieW) March 19, 2023
@redbullracing bosses are Jos Verstappen and Marko. 2 salty guys, sore losers, who don’t know what sportsmanship behavior looks like. #RedBull #F1. Your #FIA connection is a real “company” from Prison Break.
FFS learn basic human behavior.
— Lazaros-Antonios (@lazaros_anton) March 19, 2023
— Lewis Walsham (@l_walsham1998) March 19, 2023
But did you see Jos Verstappen’s face ~ he is one salty guy 😂
— Keshav Lohia (@Keshav_Lohiaa) March 19, 2023
— ahmed baokbah 🇸🇦🏎✈️ (@ahmed_baokbah) March 19, 2023
Max Verstappen on top of F1 standings
Verstappen had moved into second by the halfway mark of the 50-lap race on the 6.174-kilometres Jeddah Corniche Course on the banks of the Red Sea but never managed to hunt down Perez. The reigning F1 champ still remains top in the standings, thanks to the extra point he snatched through the fastest race lap at the death.
The Dutch driver sits top with 44 points, with Perez second on 43 and Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso in third on 30. Red Bull have 87 points in the constructors' standings with Aston Martin and Mercedes both on 38.
Verstappen said: "It was not very easy to get through the field. Once I cleared them one by one we got in a good rhythm, and I am happy to be on the podium."
Alonso took the 100th podium of his career after being reinstated as the third-placed finisher. The Spaniard finished in third place but was demoted to fourth when he was handed a post-race 10-seconds penalty for an infringement as he tried to serve an earlier five-second penalty in a pit stop.
The stewards judged that a mechanic touched the car with a rear tyre jack before the five seconds had elapsed and so the penalty had not been served correctly. That handed third place to Mercedes' George Russell who described the penalty as "harsh".
Aston Martin, however, launched an appeal, prompting the FIA to reverse their decision. "Having reviewed the new evidence, we concluded that there was no clear agreement, as was suggested to the stewards previously, that could be relied upon to determine that parties had agreed that a jack touching a car would amount to working on the car," the FIA said in a statement.
"In the circumstances, we considered that our original decision to impose a penalty on Car 14 (Alonso) needed to be reversed and we did so accordingly."
Mercedes driver George Russell was promoted to third, with Lewis Hamilton fifth for Mercedes and Ferrari's Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc in sixth and seventh respectively. Australian Oscar Piastri finished 15th in his McLaren and will hope to score his first points on home soil in Melbourne on 2 April.
Sign up to our newsletter and score the biggest sport stories of the week.