“An Explosion of Emotions”- Red Bull Insider Details Backstage Euphoria to Max Verstappen’s F1 Title Victory

Published 12/26/2021, 4:12 PM EST
Formula One F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – December 12, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates winning the race and the world championship REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY


While we often see the makings of a champion throughout the season, the emotions that boil up at the end are the ones worth looking forward to. As the checkered flag drops and a season’s worth of efforts spill over into ineffable emotion- it’s one felt by everyone.

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From Sebastian Vettel bowing to his Red Bull to Fernando Alonso roaring atop his Renault- as the victor steps out, there lies a moment in history.

Red Bull’s photographer gives an emotional insight to the team as Max Verstappen was declared champion.

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A post shared by Vladimir Rys (@vladimirrys)

The man behind the lens of Verstappen’s championship-defining moment, Vladimir Rys, revealed the sub rosa of sentiments at Red Bull. “I think how exceptional this was about the mechanics, the team boss Christian Horner and, in fact, everyone. I saw adult men crying.”

Rys captured a moment in history where Verstappen kneeled at the left rear wheel of his RB16B; after 22 rounds of trial and victory, it ended in triumph. Further, this was an emotion resonating with the entire team. “Everything accumulated throughout the season until the last race, the last lap. It was an explosion of emotions. The whole stable was euphoric.”

Red Bull and Mercedes rivalry not for the cameras

As a credited F1 photographer and one for Red Bull, Rys has followed the team around to document important moments of the championship. When asked if the rivalry between the two rivals was for the cameras, he reveals otherwise.

According to Rys, they felt the emotions even off the track. “They exchange views in the media, but this is such a spice of the whole rivalry between Max and Lewis. Without it, it would be strange.”

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Further, he quoted the team principal. Christian said this at a conference before the race in Abu Dhabi: It is not worth playing in front of the cameras to be friends. Without emotions, the sport would be lean and unsalted.”

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Thus, in a sport driven by emotions- for the drivers, teams, and fans- the 2021 season was rewarding; regardless of whose side one was on. After a season defined by its ebbs and flows, we can only look forward to the 2022 season. With the promise of increased action, let the games begin!

Watch this story: Top 5 wins of Max Verstappen’s F1 career

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Shreya Sanjeev

764 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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