Suzuka - Valtteri Bottas jumped from third to first with an electric start to win the Japanese Grand Prix on Sunday ahead of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and the Finn's Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton.
Vettel twitched before the lights went out and his hesitation enabled the fast starting Bottas to leapfrog from third into the lead.
"He just drove into the side of my car," complained an unhappy Verstappen.
Bottas followed from the lead on the next lap to take a new set of mediums emerging ahead of Vettel, meaning both the Finn and the German would need to stop again before the end of the 53 lap race.
Bottas took on fresh soft tyres five laps later leaving Hamilton again in the lead.
Hamilton swarmed all over Vettel in the closing laps but was unable to get past and make it a Mercedes one-two.
2. Sebastian Vettel (GER/Ferrari) at 11.376
5. Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP/McLaren-Renault) at 1:09.081
8. Pierre Gasly (FRA/Toro Rosso-Honda) at 1 lap
11. Daniil Kvyat (RUS/Toro Rosso-Honda) at 1 lap
14. Romain Grosjean (FRA/Haas) at 1 lap
17. Sergio Perez (MEX/Racing Point-Mercedes) at 2 laps
Not classified: Max Verstappen (NED/Red Bull-Honda) retired on lap 15
1. Lewis Hamilton (GBR) 338 pts
4. Max Verstappen (NED) 212
7. Pierre Gasly (FRA) 73
10. Nico Hlkenberg (GER) 36
13. Sergio Perez (MEX) 33
16. Kevin Magnussen (DEN) 20
19. Robert Kubica (POL) 1
3. Red Bull-Honda 323
6. Toro Rosso-Honda 59
9. Haas 28