Verstappen: Hamilton "good but not God"

Max Verstappen believes Red Bull can deliver him a Formula 1 car this year to take the fight to Mercedes, as he insisted that Lewis Hamilton was ‘good but not God.’

Verstappen: Hamilton "good but not God"

With the Dutchman having come off the back of an encouraging first season for his Milton Keynes-based team with Honda, which netted three wins, his sights are set on being able to challenge for the world championship this year.

And although main rival Hamilton was in brilliant form last year as he grabbed his sixth F1 title, Verstappen says that things will be very different if Red Bull can start putting pressure on the Briton.

“It's very car dependent, of course in F1” said Verstappen during a Red Bull media event in London. “At least when you can put the pressure on them, of course, it's a lot harder for the guy.

“If you never really have pressure, then you can always drive it with 97/98 percent and you never make mistakes, or just have one [bad] weekend out of 21 or 22.

“So even if we start within two tenths, you know, you can really mount the pressure. And of course, I would like to start straight away there because then it's really on.”

While Hamilton’s sixth title success has sealed his place as one of F1’s greatest ever drivers, Verstappen say he does not view the Briton as someone who cannot be defeated.

“Lewis is very good, he is definitely one of the best, but he is not God,” said the Dutchman. “Maybe God is with him but he's not God.”

Read Also:

Verstappen says that the mood inside Red Bull is positive about the efforts they have made over the winter.

“I think last year already it was good, especially in a transition year like we had, it was very promising,” he said. “We really want to mount a challenge to especially Mercedes and I think we can do that.

“Of course we have to wait and see from testing, but I'm very much looking forward to it. Everybody's fired up. Everybody's very motivated, especially also coming off last year in the end. You know, I think we were very competitive.

“We knew where we had to work on but you know, you cannot solve that within two, three weekends, so because we tried a few things to learn and understand for this year, we are working in the right direction.

“But of course now it's also up to us to develop more than Mercedes and Ferrari during the winter. We have to start strong from the very first race, we have to be there.”

And while he suggests that Hamilton can be rattled by being put under more pressure this year, Verstappen thinks that his Red Bull team operates to its best when stress levels are high.

“It's under pressure situations like in Brazil, for example, but also some other difficult races like in Germany, that you can see that the team is really excelling compared to the others,” he said.

“So I'm also looking forward to when we get that fight and we are really close, and I'm pretty sure that we can do better.”

Red Bull will shakedown its new car at Silverstone on February 12.

shares
comments
F1 to discuss coronavirus threat to Chinese GP

Previous article

F1 to discuss coronavirus threat to Chinese GP

Next article

Aitken gets Williams reserve role, FP1 run

Aitken gets Williams reserve role, FP1 run
Load comments
How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’ Prime

How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’

Cast in the mould of its founder Colin Chapman, Lotus was powerful and daring but flawed – as it proved through further soaring peaks and painful troughs into the 1980s. DAMIEN SMITH examines a game-changing era

Formula 1
Jul 27, 2021
The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address Prime

The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address

OPINION: Changes to the layout of Abu Dhabi’s circuit aim to reverse the trend of insipid Formula 1 races there - the promoter has even described one of the new corners as “iconic”. And that, argues STUART CODLING, is one of this venue’s abiding failings

Formula 1
Jul 26, 2021
How Ferrari offered Callum Ilott what Red Bull couldn't Prime

How Ferrari offered Callum Ilott what Red Bull couldn't

Last year's Formula 2 runner-up Callum Ilott could be on his way to becoming the first Briton to contest a grand prix in an Alfa Romeo since Reg Parnell in 1950. But, says Oleg Karpov, the Ferrari Driver Academy protege is having to temper his ambition at the moment – outwardly at least…

Formula 1
Jul 25, 2021
The signs that point to F1's rude health Prime

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says Mark Gallagher, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors.

Formula 1
Jul 24, 2021
The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat Prime

The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat

OPINION: Formula 1's sprint race trial at Silverstone drew mixed feedback on Saturday, but there remained the true test of how it would impact Sunday's Grand Prix. While fans were busy marvelling at Fernando Alonso's progress, a key lesson was being learned that would directly contribute to the dramatic lap-one clash at Copse the following day

Formula 1
Jul 22, 2021
The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt Prime

The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt

OPINION: Formula 1’s 2021 title fight turned ugly last weekend when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collided at the start of the British Grand Prix. Verstappen thankfully walked away unharmed, but this had been a clash long-since coming.

Formula 1
Jul 21, 2021
British Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

British Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 British Grand Prix will live long in the memory for the dramatic clash between Formula 1's two title protagonists, which opened the door for other drivers to capitalise. One did so in spectacular fashion, while others fluffed their lines

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash Prime

How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash

A poor start for Valtteri Bottas and the lap one clash between Formula 1's 2021 title protagonists gave Charles Leclerc a surprise lead in the British Grand Prix that he almost held to the end. Here's how the Ferrari driver came close to a famous victory, ultimately denied by a recovering Lewis Hamilton three laps from home

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021