BRIT Sam Bird says sending Max Verstappen to the Marrakesh E-Prix as a punishment is an injustice to Formula E.
The Red Bull ace was summoned to the street race in Morocco by the stewards after he came to blows with Esteban Ocon at last year’s Brazilian Grand Prix.
Verstappen was handed ‘public service’ by the FIA for shoving Ocon three times in the pit lane at Interlagos.
Asked if he had seen Verstappen, Bird said: “I didn’t see him.
“It’s nice he’s here. I mean to call coming to a Formula E race community service, I think does Formula E a bit of a injustice.
“This is an amazing category and people pay to come and watch us, it shouldn’t be a punishment to come here.
“I hope he enjoyed it, I hope he will give good feedback to some of his colleagues.”
Prior to the race in Marrakesh the FIA released the following statement: “Max Verstappen will attend the Marrakesh E-Prix as a result of the stewards’ decision at the 2018 Brazilian Formula 1 Grand Prix.
“Verstappen will spend the day as an observer to the stewards, closely following their work at a top-level international motor sport event as part of the educational and informative approach taken by the FIA in this matter.”
After spending the day with the stewards, Verstappen was intrigued to see a different side to racing.
The 21-year-old said: I think it s good to experience different things in racing rather than just sitting in the car to be here and do this kind of work has been a constructive thing for me.
I ve of course followed Formula E a bit on TV but I ve never been in the paddock, and I really enjoyed the day.
“First of all it was a really exciting race. The championship is clearly growing and there are a lot of manufacturers here, so I think it s a cool series.
Bird finished third on the podium in the Marrakesh E-Prix in a nail-biting race which featured a last-lap sprint with just 0.143 seconds separating the winner Jerome D’Ambrosio from second place.
The Virgin driver qualified on pole position after overcoming a bizarre incident which saw his car get damaged in a pit-lane crash.
NIO s Tom Dillman’s breaks failed as he went to stop, which saw him bump into the back of Robin Frijns who also rear ended his Virgin teammate Bird.
Dillman was initially stationary in the pit lane but as he went to move forward he realised he had lost his breaks.
The Frenchman said he had a split decision to make as he had no choice but to bump into his opponent s car to avoid hitting a race steward.