Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Bahrain International Circuit, 2022

Verstappen won’t change his mind over refusal to participate in Drive to Survive

2022 F1 season

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Max Verstappen says he will never return to participate in Netflix’s Formula 1 series Drive to Survive.

The fourth season of the popular programme, which has been credited with bringing a new audience to the championship, will launch tomorrow. However Verstappen confirmed last year he ended his participation with the programme makers because they had “faked” storylines in earlier episodes.

The new season therefore features no new interviews with the driver who won the championship last year. Verstappen, who recently signed a new deal which will keep him in F1 with Red Bull until 2028, said watching the new season will not change his view of it.

“I won’t change my mind,” said Verstappen in today’s FIA press conference at the Bahrain International Circuit. “I think that was already ruined after season one.”

The Red Bull driver insisted too much of the coverage in the series is exaggerated.

“I’m quite a down to earth guy,” he said. “I mean, I just want it to be facts, just don’t hype it up.

“I understand of course it needs to be like that for Netflix – people like that. That’s what every series on there as well or documentary or whatever you call it, it’s just not my thing.

“I’ll probably watch it and see how nicely over-the-top it is and then just continue with my life and I’ll probably watch some other documentaries on Netflix.”

Drive to Survive season four review

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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...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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22 comments on “Verstappen won’t change his mind over refusal to participate in Drive to Survive”

  1. Good lad! We need more straight talkers in F1.

    1. Steveetienne
      10th March 2022, 14:08

      You beat me to it! I’m bored to tears of hearing the same old platitudes from sportsmen who have had media training.

      1. I’m sure this has nothing at all to his deal with Viaplay… he’s just such a strong independent man who’s stuck to his “morals” while being paid millions from somewhere else which likely makes his ability to take pet impossible…

        1. The Dolphins
          10th March 2022, 18:17

          Spot on, it’s about money over morals. Max has been portrayed negatively in many other instances, sometimes he boycotts the producers, other times he threatens to headbutt the next person who asks him a question he doesn’t like, and in this case he just has his own show to deliver his own propaganda.

        2. It doesn’t. All who have taken just a little time analyzing what he is made off know he is just interested in racing. He couldnt care less about the media around it. He is a Kimi, not a Lewis in that regard. And yes, there are people around him taking care of financial interests. Would be not so clever if they weren’t there. I know there will be people who will keep getting after him, being programmed to do so by the UK media and Mercedes propaganda machine, but an alternative to these people might be to do some own research into someone’s profile by checking multiple articles and interviews.

    2. Good for him. Now we just need the other 19 to agree and we can have a team manager political drama. ‘Manage to Survive’.

  2. What I like about Verstappen is that he clearly draws a line under certain things he considers nonsense. I remember how he clearly shut down Tom Clarkson once during a post-qualifying (might have been post-sprint) press conference when he tried to -yet again during that weekend- once again go back to a coming together between him and Lewis.

    Some people might interpret that as mindgames or “it’s getting to him” but nope, it’s just Max drawing a clear line under what he considers a topic done and dusted. Especially with some of the more drama-centered reporters that really helps. (I think Wolff shut down a Sun reporter once in a similar fashion during one of the DTS segments for Germany 2019 iirc).

    More drivers should do this, perhaps not as resolute and foul mouthed as Max might get sometimes as that wouldn’t suit them, but I think it’s okay to speak your mind and not be all diplomatic over the same things over and over again.

  3. I saw an article today where I think it was one of the shows producers said that it’s produced like a soap opera because that is what Netflix wanted & that over the 4 seasons they have been able to create characters & narratives just like any other soap opera.

    1. I mean, it’s not that hard to do (also super common in reality tv), DTS has fake commentary to spin the narrative over the race footage (as well as editing freedoms), then they can steer further with the talking heads of Buxton and Jennie Gow (amongst others, but these two were the most prominent features) that are scripted to the narrative. At a few out-of-context quotes of drivers and team officials and presto, your narrative is done.

  4. As if Max and Red Bull needed any more soaping. Focus on defending that 1*.

    1. Naughty Neutral
      10th March 2022, 22:34

      Let it go. The endless complaining about 2021 is getting tiresome.

  5. Great picture!

  6. I think culture plays a part in it, with Max being a Dutchman. Even if he was a backmarker I don’t think he would have much time for what is essentially a sideshow!

    1. Het is correct. Onzin is geen tijd geven.

    2. Naughty Neutral
      10th March 2022, 22:36

      Probably. And Dutch bluntness it’s often perceived as rudeness.

      Come on. I want the racing to start, I’m done with the past!

  7. I don’t blame him.

  8. Max Verstappen says he will never return to participate in Netflix’s Formula 1 series Drive to Survive.

    That is the only sensible position to take on this production.

  9. Can’t he convince Horner to do the same?

    1. Horner got Oracle so it will be a hard sell

  10. Max needs to lighten up. I’m surprised he cares so much about being slightly misrepresented.

    1. @david-beau

      I wonder myself if a winning driver should partake in this kind of nonsense.

      I mean he’s confident on his ability and in his team so much they gave him the kind of amount duration of contract unheard before. He doesn’t need to polish his image anymore. He only wants to race and win. Why bother filmed, your time and privacy taken away, then portrayed the way you don’t want.

      If he’s still in a Toro Rosso or other midfield teams, maybe he’d still be considering. Otherwise it’s worthless for him

  11. Fantastic. If only the other drivers were the same.

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