Sir Lewis Hamilton has urged the British fans not to boo rival drivers after the frosty reception Max Verstappen has received all weekend.
Verstappen and Hamilton did battle throughout 2021, and came together at last year’s British Grand Prix in an accident that saw the Dutchman crash out on the opening lap.
The fight culminated in controversial fashion at the end of the 2021 season in Abu Dhabi, and the relationship between Hamilton and Verstappen ultras has been far from placid since, leading the British faithful to serenade the 24-year-old with boos.
After qualifying second in Silverstone, Verstappen revealed that he struggled to hear what Billy Monger was saying when being interviewed by the British racer, and Hamilton affirmed that “we’re better than that.”
“I would say we don’t need to do the booing,” he said.
“We have such great fans, our sporting fans feel emotions up and down, but I definitely don’t agree with booing, I don’t think we need to do that.
“I think we should be here pushing everybody, it doesn’t make any difference when you boo someone, they’ve already made the mistake, or whatever it is.
“But I really do appreciate the support I have here, maybe some of them are still feeling the pain from last year, still.”
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff suggested that if someone does not have anything nice to say, it is best not to say anything at all.
“I think we shouldn’t be seeing any booing in any sports, I think that’s unsportsmanlike,” added the Austrian.
“It’s clear we love the support the drivers have here and the enthusiasm, that’s fantastic.
“But if you are not into the other guys I think it’s best to remain silent, I think that’s the best way.
“The booing, I think none of the drivers deserve booing, no matter what happened last year.”
Verstappen was beaten to pole by Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, who claimed his maiden pole position in Formula 1.
Charles Leclerc followed in the other Ferrari, with Sergio Perez in fourth ahead of Hamilton.
The seven-time champion’s team-mate George Russell did not enjoy the greatest 12 minutes of his career in Q3 as he ended up eighth behind Lando Norris and Fernando Alonso.
Zhou Guanyu and Nicholas Latifi, who made Q3 for the first time in his career, round out the top 10 ahead of Sunday’s race.