Rosberg Warns Verstappen & Hamilton Battle Could Reach ‘Destructive Phase’

2016 F1 World Champion Nico Rosberg has said the ongoing Championship battle between Sir Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen is “awesome”, but he warned that it could reach a “destructive phase.”

The Championship protagonists have duelled on a number of occasions this season, and things quickly turned ugly in Silverstone after the pair collided at high speed.

Verstappen suffered a high-impact crash into the barriers as a result of the incident, while Hamilton was able to carry on unscathed and won the race despite being handed a 10-second time penalty.

Commenting on this year’s Championship battle, Rosberg said both drivers aren’t backing out, so there’s always the risk of more crashes between Hamilton and Verstappen.

“As long as no one gets hurt, it’s awesome,” Rosberg said in an interview with Motorsport Magazine.

“It’s a such a great battle for us fans to watch because they’re both the best of their generation. They’re both the best wheel-to-wheel racers.

“They know how to take the cars to the absolute limit when it’s wheel-to-wheel. And so inevitably, there’s going to be contact. There already was [before Silverstone], in Imola.

“And Lewis I think now is not backing out anymore. Max will never back out. So it’s exciting stuff.”

Continuing, Rosberg warned that the rivalry between Hamilton and Verstappen could reach a “destructive phase.”

“There is a basis of respect. But we’re not at the destructive phase yet. I think it’s just building up. Now let’s see where it goes.

“They could have also already collided in Silverstone three corners before when they were going down the straight. You could have had a Webber/Vettel situation – remember when they collided in Turkey? It was very close.

“I mean, Max is hyper-aggressive, and Lewis has stopped backing out. So it’s going to be interesting for them to manage that,” the German added.