Max Verstappen has claimed that he wanted to punch anyone who would’ve told something ‘wrong’ after his teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, pipped him to pole at the last race in Mexico. The Dutchman had been the fastest all weekend except for that one final run.
“I wouldn’t even say it, but I could literally do some damage to someone if somebody would say something wrong to me after qualifying, that’s how angry I was. Every little thing makes it even worse,” said Verstappen.
“I was literally pissed off. And of course every little thing that comes with it makes me even more angry.”
If he had indeed been able to take that chance, he could’ve become the youngest pole-sitter in Formula 1, breaking Sebastian Vettel’s decade-long record (he had set it at that iconic Monza race in 2008). But Verstappen insisted that it was not on his mind at all.
“For me it was not really after the youngest pole record,” he said. “I don’t think Lewis really cares that he’s not the youngest pole-sitter, with five titles, you know what I mean? It’s not a big deal. Just fighting for pole, that was the target.”
“For me it felt like I never really had a great opportunity, compared to some other qualifying sessions where I felt like it was great, a good feeling, and then you’re only P3 or P5 sometimes, but it felt like it was a good session. This felt horrible, and then you’re still second by such a small margin.”
Verstappen and his father, a former F1 driver himself, had also not been happy with the ‘extravagant’ celebrations by Ricciardo after taking the third pole of his career.
Verstappen is known to be an aggressive customer, with his driving style and media personality being ample proof. However, the aggression helps him focus and deliver results on track, which no one can argue about.
It would’ve indeed been a big story if he had hurt someone but he channeled it onto Sunday, which we can all agree worked out well for him.