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Verstappen to do public service at Marrakesh Formula E race

Verstappen to do public service at Marrakesh Formula E race
FILE PHOTO: Formula One F1 - Japanese Grand Prix - Suzuka Circuit, Suzuka, Japan - October 6, 2018 Red Bull's Max Verstappen celebrates third position for the Japanese Grand Prix after qualifying REUTERS/Issei Kato -
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(Reuters) - Dutch Formula One driver Max Verstappen will serve part of his public service, imposed by the sport's governing body after he shoved French rival Esteban Ocon in Brazil last year, at Saturday's Formula E race in Marrakesh.

The FIA said the 21-year-old Red Bull driver will join officials in Morocco at the second round of the season of the all-electric series.

"Max Verstappen will attend the Marrakesh E-Prix as a result of the stewards' decision at the 2018 Brazilian Formula One Grand Prix," the statement said.

"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."

The youngest ever Formula One winner was ordered to do two days of public service for an angry confrontation with Force India's Ocon in November.

Verstappen led at Interlagos when he tried to pass backmarker Ocon, who attempted to retake the position but instead made contact -- sending the Dutchman into a spin that cost him victory.

The Red Bull driver angrily confronted Ocon after the race and gave him a shove.

Verstappen had said afterwards that the public service would have to be 'suitable'.

"I’m definitely not going to look silly because I think I am anyway already very harshly treated by that," he said. "So we’ll find something suitable. Because I’m not going to look like an idiot."

Verstappen also said in Brazil, when asked about electric racing, that Formula E seemed to be becoming more interesting but petrol engines were his thing.

"I will probably be one of the last people in the world to try and buy the last barrels of oil," he joked.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Ed Osmond)

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