Alex Brundle believes Max Verstappen made an ‘error’ by not seeing Lando Norris on his outside, prior to the pair touching wheels on Sunday.

Norris had complained of Verstappen moving under braking prior to their crash, but driver turned pundit Brundle explained that, after analysing the on-board footage, at the key moment of their clash, the Red Bull driver may not have seen him coming.

Alex Brundle: Max Verstappen clash with Lando Norris ‘tiny margins and huge consequences’

Norris had been challenging Verstappen for the lead over a number of laps with a series of “divebombs”, as Verstappen labelled them, but the Red Bull driver had largely been able to keep the McLaren man at bay before the two collided at Turn 3.

Both drivers got punctures on their rear left as they made contact, with Verstappen able to get back out again after pitting to come home fifth while Norris was forced to retire.

Verstappen was defensive of his driving in terms of how he protected the position while Norris believes blame lay at the feet of his friend and rival, but with Norris looking to move on the outside, Brundle believes an ‘error’ came from Verstappen when he drifted back towards the left-hand side of the track without knowing the driver behind was there.

“It was a moment of tiny margins and huge consequences,” Brundle explained in his post-race analysis on F1 TV.

“You go into the braking zone, the 150-metre board, Lando Norris directly behind Max Verstappen. Now, there’s a point every driver knows when they head towards a hairpin like this where you have to stop thinking about the driver behind you, and start thinking about where you’re going to brake for the hairpin.

More reaction to the big talking point from the Austrian Grand Prix

???? Austrian GP driver ratings: Max Verstappen rating takes big hit with costly mistake

???? Austrian GP conclusions: Verstappen vs Norris, Adrian Newey theory, valuable Russell lesson

“That point comes here, Lando Norris commits then down the outside at around the 100-metre board and Max Verstappen drifts across the road into Lando Norris.

“It’s so easy to argue that this is a penalty for Max Verstappen, who picks up a 10-second penalty as a result of the consequence of this move and the outcome of this move across the road, not the driving behaviour.

“I think this is an error for Max Verstappen. The reason why it is an error is you can see he’s clearly at this point [before the corner], not looking across in his left hand mirror for Lando Norris.

“He’s looking into the corner where he’s going to be pointing that Red Bull, towards the apex, and I firmly believe that Max Verstappen doesn’t know Lando has jumped down the outside of him here.

“So if it’s an error, if it’s a lower formula, you look at this and you go ‘Max Verstappen has not intended to move across the road here on Lando’, and therefore you might consider it a racing incident.

“But this is Formula 1, and Formula 1 is all about tiny margins with massive consequences – and that’s exactly what happened here between Lando Norris and Max Verstappen.

“Verstappen picked up a penalty here, and I do agree with that penalty as a result of the fact you’ve got two leading cars out of the race, a car that moves across the road and makes contact with another and howsoever that came about, you have to penalise that if you’re the stewards in this event.”

Read next: Has Verstappen v Norris clash lit fuse for bitter 2021-esque title fight?