Red Bull Formula 1 chief Christian Horner says that Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel had a "tourettes moment" during Sunday's Azerbaijan Grand Prix when he swiped Lewis Hamilton while running behind the safety car.

Vettel was hit with a 10-second time penalty in Baku for dangerous driving after running into Hamilton, although the Briton felt it was too lenient a sanction.

Vettel's former boss Horner agreed that a penalty was warranted in the race, believing it was a heat of the moment move from the four-time world champion.

"It looked like Sebastian obviously felt that Lewis brake-tested him and then it just looked like a red-mist moment, where he's lost it and taken a swipe at him, which was only ever going to result in a penalty," Horner said.

"But it's heat of the moment stuff. A penalty was inevitable after that. I guess Lewis was upset about it because after he'd served his own effective penalty, he came out behind him. It's down to the stewards."

When asked if he was surprised by Vettel's actions, Horner said: "He's obviously had, momentarily, a tourettes moment.

"Emotions are running high, they're fighting for a world championship. I think it's an immense bit of rivalry between the two of them for the rest of the season. I think it's going to be a great championship battle throughout the rest of this year.

"I hope as we are gaining in competitiveness that we can - I think we are too far out of contention to compete for the championship - but I think we're gaining performance and speed to be able to compete for race wins, as we get more performance on the car."

 

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