Max Verstappen Joins Elusive F1 Driver List Along Hamilton, Schumacher & Vettel After Mexican GP

Published 11/09/2021, 6:22 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Mexico City Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 7, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates on the podium after winning the race REUTERS/Andres Stapff


Max Verstappen has been an unstoppable force this season. Even as he joined the sport, there was something that had set the Dutchman apart from the rest. Thus, setting aside a majority of the drivers on the grid, Verstappen joins an exclusive club of drivers after his win at the Mexican GP.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Verstappen’s victory in Mexico was record-breaking in itself. No driver has won the Mexican GP more than twice; Verstappen set the bar with his third victory in the Autodrom.

Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates after finishing first on the podium with second placed, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

However, this also marked Verstappen’s ninth win of the season. Before Verstappen, only five drivers have won nine or more races in a season. In a list with names like Nigel Mansell, Michael Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel, Nico Rosberg, and reigning champion, Lewis Hamilton- Verstappen engraves his name in the history books as number 6.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Another interesting commonality is that all these drivers have been champions- barring the Dutch Lion, who has a fighting chance to tick that box off as well with the 2021 season.

Max Verstappen & the 2021 title

Max Verstappen’s 9 victories so far have been crucial in Red Bull‘s fight against Mercedes. With Sergio Perez getting accustomed to his new car, Max Verstappen had carried the team for a majority of the season; just him against two Mercedes. Despite having three DNFs this season as opposed to his rival’s one, it would be foolish to doubt the driver’s capabilities to get the title.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The race in Mexico helped him advance his lead for the third consecutive time. Now 19 points ahead of his rival, Verstappen doesn’t seem like the driver to whom featuring on exclusive lists matters. The unflustered driver he is, he will just take it in his stride.

ZANDVOORT, NETHERLANDS – SEPTEMBER 05: Race winner Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing celebrates with his team after the F1 Grand Prix of The Netherlands at Circuit Zandvoort on September 05, 2021 in Zandvoort, Netherlands. (Photo by Clive Rose – Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Talking about the thrilling championship, Verstappen remained candidly aloof. “I don’t believe in momentum. So, every single race we have to try and nail the details…things can go wrong very quickly, or can go right. So, it’s going to be really tight and exciting to the end.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

With the heart and the form of a potential champion, will 2021 be Verstappen’s history-making title win? While things look sunny for the driver now, with a season like 2021, the tables can flip at any moment.

Watch this story: Lewis Hamilton: Ranking His F1 World Titles From 2008 to 2020

Enjoyed reading this article? Download our exclusive app to get 24x7 coverage, latest memes and social media banter. Click here to download.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Shreya Sanjeev

605 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.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT