Kevin Magnussen says won't change his approach to racing in Formula 1 despite recent criticism from fellow drivers. 

Magnussen was branded “the most dangerous guy I have ever raced with” by Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly after a high-speed run-in during the closing stages of last weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix, for which the Haas driver was handed a 10-second time penalty. 

The Dane has come under fire over concerns regarding his recent driving standards, having also clashed with Nico Hulkenberg at last year’s Hungarian Grand Prix, prompting the Renault driver to label Magnussen as the “most unsporting driver”. 

“I don’t like compromises. I will give everything. I will die in the car. I won’t hold back,” Magnussen is quoted as saying by Reuters in an interview during the build-up to the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. “I would put my life on (the line). Absolutely. When you put your helmet on and you’re in the race, I find that’s just everything there is in the world. 

“I love my family, and there’s so many things in life I enjoy, but when I’m in the car there’s nothing else that means anything. For me, when I get in the car, the essential of life is Formula 1.”

“I race hard,” he added. “In a situation like this with a midfield team, you’re not guaranteed to score points. And sometimes you have nothing to lose.

“You might get a penalty, you might lose your front wing but there’s nothing to lose if you’re 11th. Go for it. Sometimes you have to be a lot more aggressive when you’re fighting out there.

“If you are fighting for the championship, you have to play the long game. You have to change your approach. If I was fighting for the championship, you wouldn’t see me racing the same way.”

 

And Magnussen, who has previous voiced his dislike of the Halo cockpit protection system, said he would have preferred to race in the sport between the 1950s and 1960s - often considered as F1’s most dangerous period. 

“I dream of racing in the ‘60s.  If I had one wish, I would say to be born in the ‘30s and be young in the ‘50s and ‘60s. It hurts my racing heart when I see things so far from what it was back then. I envy those guys so much.

“It was just pure and more exciting. You could make a difference if you were really willing to take risks. And also if you felt comfortable on that limit. Now everyone feels comfortable, there’s no risk.

“Back then, if you have the ability to be calm and collected, on the limit of death effectively, you made a difference. And now that’s not really a factor any more.”

 

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