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F1 world champion on why drivers don't reach Verstappen 'level'

F1 world champion on why drivers don't reach Verstappen 'level'

F1 News

F1 world champion on why drivers don't reach Verstappen 'level'

F1 world champion on why drivers don't reach Verstappen 'level'

1997 Formula 1 world champion Jacques Villeneuve has said that Max Verstappen's desire to live and breathe racing is what puts him ahead of his F1 rivals, stating that other drivers 'do a bunch of other things' off the track.

Verstappen cruised to his third consecutive world championship title in 2023, destroying his rivals and breaking a hatful of records along the way.

He has now won 34 races in the last two seasons, a staggering statistic that has put him into third in the all-time list of race winners, and backs up quite how dominant both he and Red Bull have been.

The Dutchman has previously stated that he could quit the sport at an earlier age than the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso, citing quite how much work he has to put into being world champion.

Max Verstappen cruised to his third world title in 2023
Max Verstappen has threatened to quit the sport early, for multiple different reasons
Fernando Alonso, Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton are the three most successful drivers still racing in F1

'Red Bull aren't too far ahead'

Now, Villeneuve has agreed that Verstappen goes above and beyond for his love of racing, and that is what puts him above the rest.

“Red Bull is not that far ahead,” he told PlanetF1.

“When they got all their poles, it was a tenth, half a tenth… super close! So that’s not domination.

“That’s not the years of Mercedes when they were a second ahead of everyone, and everybody was OK with that – there was not an issue.

Jacques Villeneuve thinks the current drivers lack the same level of focus as Max Verstappen

“Max makes the difference because he’s at it 24 hours a day. He’s never getting tired. He gets out for the race car, and he’s still thinking about racing. That’s all that exists," he continued.

“On the simulator, go-karts, whatever. I don’t see the other drivers doing that. Maybe [Fernando] Alonso a bit but, all the other ones, they’re busy doing other things. They get out of the car and they do a bunch of other things.

“If they all focused like Max, then maybe they would be at Max’s level.”

READ MORE: Verstappen admits IGNORING calls from Red Bull supremo

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