Red Bull’s Dr Helmut Marko believes that a “show” was put on by Mercedes in relation to Lewis Hamilton’s injury at the Italian Grand Prix.
Hamilton was involved in a crash with championship rival Max Verstappen midway through the race, forcing both drivers to retire.
Both cars went wheel-to-wheel into Turn 1, with Verstappen getting launched over Hamilton’s car as he touched the inside sausage kerb.
The right rear wheel of Verstappen’s RB16B made contact with the top of Hamilton’s helmet, however the seven-time world champion was able to walk away from the incident.
Verstappen was deemed at fault for the collision, and was handed a three-place grid penalty for the Russian Grand Prix.
After the crash at Monza, Hamilton was spotted with tape covering part of his neck, and spoke of tightness in the area.
Marko says Hamilton’s remarks were a “show” put on amid his close title fight with Red Bull’s Verstappen.
“It was a normal racing accident, all the stories surrounding it were pulled out of thin air by Mercedes,” Marko told Austrian newspaper Österreich.
“Verstappen had already dropped out when Hamilton tried to get out of the gravel with the reverse gear.
“The medical car saw this and drove on. And then a show is put on that poor Hamilton is suddenly injured.”
Marko nevertheless praised the role of the Halo in the crash, admitting that he was “sceptical” over its introduction.
After the race, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff claimed that the Halo, which was introduced into F1 in 2017, saved Hamilton’s life.
Marko says that the cockpit protection device was “crucial in ensuring that things turned out so well” for Hamilton.