Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Yas Marina, 2016

Verstappen says F1’s move away from ‘toy cars’ has suited him

2017 F1 season

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Max Verstappen says the current generation of Formula One cars suits him better than the “toy cars” used until last year.

Formula One relaxed its aerodynamic regulations for 2017 and introduced wider tyres, resulting in cars which are several seconds per lap faster than last year.

Verstappen said the move to the current generation of cars has been “a bit more positive” for him.

“Because it’s more like a race car, last year was a bit more like a toy car feeling.”

“This year it’s a bit more rough, it’s harder to drive. And in general it’s just more enjoy able because you can go faster into the corners without being too worried about locking fronts and stuff. I think that helped me.”

Verstappen said the extra experience he now has also explains why he’s been able to perform better in his first full season at Red Bull.

“Of course if you haven’t really race a lot in lower categories and you make the jump to Formula One you have to learn in Formula One,” he said. “And of course a lot more people are watching.”

“But I think in general compared to last year, the speed was already there, just sometimes like qualifying for example last year was a bit more tricky. That’s quite normal when you jump into a new car which is not really made around you or you didn’t have a lot of time to get used to during the season.”

“I think this year with the winter test that helped a lot. Just little details inside the car which makes you feel a bit more comfortable. Having more experience in qualifying helped me to have better starting positions and if you start in a better position normally your race result is also a bit better, if you have a decent start. I think all in all that just helps a lot.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 11 comments on “Verstappen says F1’s move away from ‘toy cars’ has suited him”

    1. Good stuff, Max. Onward and upward.

    2. Got to hand it to Max. He was absolutely on it this season. He looked far quicker than his teammate with this year’s machinery, which is something he couldn’t do as convincingly last year.

      If Red Bull start next season with their season ending form of 2017, I expect Max to be fighting for the WDC.

      1. with renault reliability?

        haha good one

        Mercs engines have been bulletproof with only 1 failure per season

        it why they will win next season too with only 3 engines allowed

        1. Only 3 engines. How ridiculous. Now we’ll have even more ridiculous driver penalties. My goodness, that has to be changed!

          1. @shimks, people often say that, but struggle to then come up with a practical alternative that does not penalise smaller teams more harshly (such as those who propose imposing financial penalties on the team or taking points away from them in the WCC) or fails to provide an effective disincentive to simply throw more resources at a car (if a manufacturer can afford to throw fresh engines at a car whilst a smaller team cannot, then it just creates even more of an imbalance between teams).

            Brawn has acknowledged that issue when discussing the topic, conceding that whilst it might not always be popular and is by no means a perfect system, it is at least a system that can be applied fairly and transparently to all teams on the grid, whereas other systems run the risk of having a disproportionate impact on smaller teams.

      2. If Red Bull start next season with their season ending form of 2017, I expect Max to be fighting for the WDC.

        For Red Bull to be fighting for a championship in 2018, Renault have to make Ferrari-like power unit gains, with Ferrari or better reliability.

        Having said that, it would be a testament to their driver pairing if Red Bull can take the constructors championship to Mercedes and Ferrari, even if a single driver among them doesn’t have the Renault grunt to challenge for the driver’s title.

        1. Ferrari-like

          @phylyp I guess it’s at least not unprecedented

    3. “This year it’s a bit more rough, it’s harder to drive. And in general it’s just more enjoy able because you can go faster into the corners without being too worried about locking fronts and stuff.

      Tell that to Stroll.

    4. Max is a once in a generation talent. Super special.

    5. Max is right -as expected new cars suit more HAM than BOT(or ROS),VET over RAI,VER over RIC,ALO over..BUT,HUL over ..PER..Tip-toeing around the track is not a fast way to drive any more..time for aggressive cornering and late braking.Which in my opinion is not bad at all.

      1. I agree Herr Hopper. Talent comes to the fore when they race difficult cars. Eddie Irvine neatly summed it up saying the 96 Ferrari was a dog and he couldn’t get within a second of MS, as the car got better in 97/98/99 he eventually got to within a tenth.

        Hustling a car has always marked the greats from the goods and its why Lewis & Alonso get the big bucks and Max may well dwarf them all eventually

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