Former Formula 1 driver Jos Verstappen believes his son, Max Verstappen, has "never been as good" as he is right now, following impressive performances in the Grand Prix races in the United States, Russia, Austria, Brazil, Mexico, and the last race of the season in Abu Dhabi.
Verstappen has had a season of ups and down, as he has won two races and secured 11 podium positions, only for high-profile on-track crashes and engine reliability issues to derail any realistic chance of a championship assault.
The latest controversial incident involving the Dutchman saw him physically confront Esteban Ocon following a collision during the Brazilian Grand Prix which ultimately cost him the win at Interlagos.
He will subsequently be punished by the FIA for the incident, but despite the controversy, his father believes he is currently driving at his best.
"America was good, Russia was good, Austria was good, Brazil was good, Mexico was good, Abu Dhabi was good," Jos told Ziggo Sport.
"Max has never been so good in his skin. He has learned a lot and did almost all the races very well except for the start of the season."
Very happy to finish the last race of 2018 on the podium ???? What an incredible year it has been! Thank you @redbullracing, friends, family, partners and of course all fans for the great support ???? #KeepPushing #AbuDhabiGP ???????? pic.twitter.com/M3fWf5ILlx — Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) November 25, 2018
Verstappen Sr. believes that Max is given tough treatment by the press whenever something happens, but insists he has to take more risks than say, Lewis Hamilton, because his Red Bull car isn't as fast as Mercedes.
"He did a few things that didn't work and immediately had the whole world's press on him," he added.
"I notice that Max uses his mind more in the race and takes slightly less risk. Max has to take extra risks to get on that podium compared to Lewis Hamilton, but only because his car is not as good."