Opposing Max Verstappen, Christian Horner Salutes Netflix’s ‘Drive to Survive’ for “Transforming” F1

Published 11/08/2023, 5:33 AM EST

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A lot of decisions and moments have defined F1 in some way or form. However, it’s quite deny with the fact that the implementation of Drive to Survive has done more good than harm to the sport we all love. With drivers like Max Verstappen not being a big fan of the TV show, Red Bull team principal, Christian Horner has inadvertently opposed Verstappen’s take by saluting the Netflix show for transforming F1.

Considering the contrasting number of personalities on the grid, drivers like Max Verstappen and Fernando Alonso are not the biggest fans of the TV show. Verstappen lately dissed the Netflix show, “No. No. I don’t know, probably I’m a bit more old school in that. I wish social media never existed.” But whether these drivers are willing to admit it or not, DTS has ultimately benefited the sport a lot and truly helped make F1 an actual ‘global sport’, a sentiment the Verstappen’s team boss agrees with, contrasting his views. Moreover, with the upcoming Las Vegas Grand Prix approaching soon, the effect of Drive to Survive will soon be visible, once again.

Christian Horner’s recent comments on the transformation of F1, thanks to Drive to Survive


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Following yet another win for Red Bull (Thanks to Max Verstappen), Christian Horner recently appeared on the podcast, Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard. With the Las Vegas Grand Prix approaching swiftly, it makes sense why Horner is already collaborating with US-based content creators. Moreover, with the news regarding the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix possibly being canceled, the Las Vegas GP carries more significance.

via Reuters

During the podcast, Horner shared the impact of DTS in helping F1 increase its viewers. He stated, “We were unknown in the US previously but now you know it’s it’s unbelievable, even on in Santa Monica down on the pier yesterday went down there and it’s the amount of people following Formula 1 is just gone off.” 


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In their interesting conversation, Dax Shepard couldn’t agree more with the Red Bull principal as he shared his opinion on the impact of Drive to Survive. He stated, “It’s like 5x in the US it’s unbelievable. If you think of Austin [United States Grand Prix], what was it this last was like 420,000 fans. Five years ago it was 90,000 or 105,000. I mean it’s enormous. I’ve never seen a show that’s more powerful to a sport.”

Regarding the impact of the show on the sport, Christian Horner got quite candid by sharing his honest thoughts. He further added, “It’s transformed the sport. It’s transformed the business. We’ve got so many American partners now. I mean Ford Motor Company without Drive to Survive would not be possible.”

Fernando Alonso & Max Verstappen Diss Netflix’s ‘Drive to Survive’ as F1’s “Show” Turns Undesirable

Christian Horner’s honest thoughts not only highlight how much F1 has gained in terms of popularity and increase in audience. But also how the business has benefited, in terms of monetary reasons. As visible by the Red Bull-Ford Motor Company partnership for the 2026 season. Moreover, with Netflix already covering the current F1 season, the sixth season of the show is arguably going to be more entertaining.

Will Max Verstappen appear more on this Drive to Survive season 6?


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With Max Verstappen already making it quite clear that he’s not a big fan of the DTS show, the question remains whether he will appear more in the upcoming sixth season. Considering the fact that he has been dominating on another level, whilst also shattering multiple records, it makes sense that Netflix would want to include more of him.

via Reuters

During the start of the current F1 season, according to Autosport, Verstappen stated, “Of course, I understand when you create a show, there needs to be drama, it needs to be exciting. But I’m a guy who finds it also very important that you’re portrayed well, and that they do not start to copy comments on the different kinds of footage while it didn’t happen like that.” With Verstappen making his issues clear, it’ll be interesting to see if Netflix plays along or does things the ‘Hollywood’ way.


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WATCH THIS STORY | F1 to Hold Crunch Netflix Talks Amidst Max Verstappen “Fake” Accusations

Opposing his world champion driver, Christian Horner salutes Netflix’s Drive to Survive for transforming F1. Despite Max Verstappen’s continued lack of enthusiasm for the TV show, it remains uncertain whether he will eventually come to enjoy it.


Written by:

Adhiraj Dhyani


One take at a time

Adhiraj Dhyani is an F1 writer at EssentiallySports. He kick-started his online writing journey on Drivetribe, where he passionately covered F1 and automobile content. Adhiraj's love for Formula 1 dates back to 2015, and he's an ardent supporter of Sebastian Vettel as well as Lewis Hamilton.
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Edited by:

Aishwary Gaonkar