Verstappen : The new face of formula 1

Take a moment to let that sub-heading sink in. For years, fans of Formula 1 have held up Ayrton Senna as the pinnacle of it's class. The benchmark of measuring driver skill, bravery and tenacity and the ability to excel in difficult conditions. By those measures, Verstappen eclipses all others around him.

We witnessed something very, very special today

Christian Horner - Team Principal - Red Bull Racing

Pick any race from the past two seasons in Formula 1 and it's unlikely that there hasn't been an outrageous pass made by the teenager during it. While yesterday at Interlagos put his face and talent well and truly in the world spotlight, his incredible skill and talent has been obvious from the outset. Just look at his races in Formula Three and you'll immediately recognize the bold, firm and sometimes dangerous-looking antics of Verstappen.

Verstappen indulging in a spot of mid-race drifting at Interlagos

It's not hard to see why so many are quick to compare Max with Ayrton, they both have an unmistakably aggresive driving style taking their respective cars to the limits of control and quite often breaching that. Senna was renowned for his car control in the wet, and almost anytime there is a fantastic drive in the wet that driver is always compared to be "nearly as good as Senna". But yesterday was different, in so many ways.

This year has already drawn similarities between the two in other ways as well. Notably the Dutchman's apparent lack of "respect" for the more established racing drivers. Former champions, team bosses and pundits have all been quick to berate Verstappen for his tactics and driving style. We've seen on numerous occasions this year especially, ignition points from other drivers and most memorably the debacle in Mexico that saw Verstappen take third only to be penalised moments before stepping onto the podium. This immediately sparked memories of the love-hate relationship many drivers had with Senna during his lifetime, and his seemingly uncrushable desire to win.

Senna's debut season in F1 saw him finish 9th in the championship finishing 6 races out of 16 while Verstappen's saw him finish 13 out of 19 to finish 12th in the championship. Max Verstappen is one of the most exciting talents to arrive in Formula 1 for decades, and you can't help but think the youngster is destined for a glittering career in F1.

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Comments (2)
  • Saying that Verstappen is the new Senna is the stupidest statement I heard since they said that the Spice Girls are the new Beatles. He's good that's a fact, but he hasn't nearly proven to be as good as Senna.

    "the Dutchman's apparent lack of "respect" for the more established racing drivers" is imo not comparable to Senna either. Verstappen is still a child, he was 17 years old when he started in F1. Offcourse he hasn't got any respect for the more established and older racing drivers, just like any other adolescent hasn't got any respect for their elders.

    And then the worst part; why are you even comparing the results of both of their debuts? Senna was able to finnish 9th in the championship by only finishing aprox. 30% of the races in a Toleman, a car that wasn't competitive at all. Where Verstappen finished 12th by finishing aprox. 60% of the races in a Red-bull and a Torro Rosso, one of the best cars and the other a really descent one. Compared to Senna, Verstappen's debut was shit.

    1 year ago
  • It was very special indeed. And as a chauvinistic Dutchie proud of the lad!

    2 years ago

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