“I’m Not the Guy Who Copies”: Verstappen Explains His Refusal to Study Hamilton

Published 06/27/2021, 8:24 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Spanish Grand Prix – Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain – May 9, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton celebrates on the podium with the trophy after winning the race alongside Red Bull’s Max Verstappen who finished in second place REUTERS/Albert Gea


Once the turbo-hybrid era began in F1, Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes took up the top spot in the sport, and didn’t let go. They won back-to-back championships, with Hamilton even equalling Michael Schumacher’s ‘untouchable’ record of seven world championships last year. He is considered, by many, to be the F1 GOAT, and thus, his competitors are always expected to learn something or the other from him.

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However, his prime title challenger this year, Max Verstappen, who is now ahead of him in the drivers’ standings, refuses to compete that way. While he does keep track of what the Briton is doing, Verstappen focuses more on improving himself.

Watch Story: From Shocking Lewis Hamilton Crash to Ferrari Pit Stop Blunder: Most Sensational Moments in Bahrain GP History

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What did Max Verstappen say?

In a YouTube video on F1’s official channel, Will Buxton interviewed the 23-year-old Max Verstappen ahead of the Styrian Grand Prix.

Buxton asked Verstappen what has he learned after seven rounds this season about his title rival, Lewis Hamilton, the dutch replied: “You study your rivals. But I also always, you know, look back at myself because, you know, when you look at others, they, of course, have good qualities.

“I’m not the guy who copies. I’m, of course, always listening, looking, but at the end of the day, you have to look at yourself, what you can improve and what you can do better.

“But when you copy, you can only be as good at it. So for me, that doesn’t really work.”

Red Bull and Max to look for another win at home

The Milton Keynes-based team would certainly look to build on their red hot form for the final race. The Austrian team secured their first double podium of the season after Max Verstappen secured his maiden win at Circuit Paul Ricard and Sergio Perez finished at P3.

Formula One F1 – French Grand Prix – Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France – June 20, 2021. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen drives past his team members as he wins the race REUTERS/Eric Gaillard.

The Dutch overtook the seven-time world champion on the penultimate lap of the race. Although Verstappen made an early error at Turn 1, he soon found himself back in the lead.

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After the win at Circuit Paul Ricard, the Dutchman has extended his lead by 12 points over Lewis Hamilton in the Drivers’ Championship standings. Similarly, the Milton Keynes outfit have extended their lead over the Mercedes by 37 points in the Constructors’ Championship.

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What do you think? Can Red Bull display yet another solid performance in their own backyard? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Pingaksh Sharma

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