Max Verstappen has described competing in Formula 1 as being "kind of a hobby" but insists he takes his on-track duties seriously.
Verstappen heads into what will be his seventh season in F1 this year, and with a new team-mate in Sergio Perez as Red Bull aim to finally challenge Mercedes.
While the Dutch driver would naturally love to become a champion, his relaxed attitude overall to F1 is apparent.
“For me, racing, I like it and it’s kind of a hobby, if you could call it a hobby," remarked Verstappen.
"But it is and it’s nice because you go to Formula 1 and then when I get home I have fun with family and friends, and then you know when you have to be super-serious and on it again.
“For me, finding that balance and being happy in life, that makes you a better driver and you just take on the experiences you had from the year before – the good and the bad things – and you try to do better the year after and that’s how I go on every year.”
Verstappen has finished third in the drivers' standings over the last two years. Last season he ended the campaign with a morale-boosting win in the final race in Abu Dhabi.
While declaring his desire "to do better" each year, Verstappen is not the type of driver who overanalyses his performances.
“Honestly, I think it [improvement] just comes naturally," added Verstappen.
"It’s not like I have a notebook, go home and I am like ‘How do I need to go faster?’ and I go through a notebook."
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