Dad told me I was going to be a bus driver, not a world champion – Verstappen

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In the round-up: Max Verstappen says his father Jos prepared him for the negative attention which has come with being a Formula 1 driver.

In brief

Dad told me I was going to be a bus driver – Verstappen

Verstappen described how his father Jos, a former Formula 1 driver, tried to motivate him to work harder at developing his racing skills.

“My dad never said I was going to be a champion,” Verstappen told Channel 4. “He was always the opposite. He would tell me I was going to be a truck driver or like a bus driver.”

Verstappen said “all the way to Formula 1 I still didn’t work hard enough in his eyes because I have a bit more of a relaxed personality compared to him in terms of how I approach a weekend.

“I was winning my races and stuff, but he said it’s not enough to be successful in Formula 1. I think that prepared me in a way very well for criticism or noise.”

Stop using sprint races to decide grid – Magnussen

Kevin Magnussen says Formula 1 sprint races should be standalone events which do not set the grid for the grand prix.

Speaking ahead of the second sprint race weekend of the season, Magnussen said he had “a good first experience” of the format at Imola but believes the format encourages conservative driving.

“I watched them last year and the big question is whether or not you want to take a risk in the sprint. If you didn’t qualify for your position in the main race during the sprint and instead the qualifying on Friday was your starting position for both the sprint and the main race, then you would be able to go for it in the sprint without having to take risks for your starting position. Maybe that could be a solution to make people go for it a bit more in the sprint.”

Van Amersfoort quits Euroformula Open

Van Amersfoort has withdrawn its team from the Euroformula Open series ahead of the championship’s fifth round in Hungary this weekend.

“It was not an easy decision to make, but we no longer see room for our team, nor for our drivers to further develop towards the goals set for participating in this championship,” said the team’s CEO Rob Niessink. “We want to thank Jesus Pareja from GT Sport, as well as Dallara and HWA’s engine program for their efforts and support over the years.”

The team supplied three of the 10 cars which took part in the championship’s last round at Spa-Francorchamps. Drivex have added a car for local racer Benjamin Berta at this weekend’s round at the Hungaroring.

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Comment of the day

While Ross Brawn lavished praise on the quality of last weekend’s racing and the effect Formula 1’s new regulations have had, DB-C90 sees another way to make the action even better still:

Yes Ross, the racing has been better, but in my opinion, the racing has been much better in those laps where DRS has been disabled.

In the first couple of laps we see some real hard racing and there’s been some fantastic overtakes, as there has been during periods when the race has been restarted with DRS disabled, but once DRS is enabled, we usually see long DRS trains where there’s really not a lot happening.

Those passes made under DRS seem to be all too easy – it’s time to trim them down and make drivers “drive” to get past, not wait for DRS and hope the guy in front doesn’t have it.

I really like the fact that cars have been able to run closer, hate the bouncing up and down (hurts my eyes & head) and hopefully that’ll change, but I’m hating the long DRS trains that have resulted. Can we please have a race or two without DRS – let’s see some genuine racing now you’ve given cars the ability to do so.
DB-C90 (@dbradock)

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to John H, Mitz1111, Sebsronnie, Elliot Horwood and Isaac Mwale!

On this day in motorsport

  • 70 years ago today Alberto Ascari won the French Grand Prix, held for the first time at Rouen, and took the lead of the drivers’ championship, where he remained until the end of the following season

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64 comments on “Dad told me I was going to be a bus driver, not a world champion – Verstappen”

  1. Jos never figured Masi into the equation.

    1. I hate to say it but Max deserved to win the WDC last year, unfortunate for Hamilton I know, he would have won if not for safety car, but that is what it is.

      But this year Max is gonna get it again, leclerc and ferrari combo doesn’t have that level of competitiveness and development potential that RBR and Mercedes had last year. RBR will devour ferrari this year.

      Hopefully mercedes will come back and we will see some real rivalry, not that fake chit chat between verstappen and leclerc.

    2. If Hamilton had defended on worn tyres like Leclerc did at Silverstone, he would have been world champion. It’s very simple.

      1. Or merc could have gotten their pitstop strategy right that year. They lost it themselves..

      2. If Hamilton had defended on worn tyres like Leclerc did at Silverstone, he would have been world champion. It’s very simple.

        Last i checked, Carlos was directly behind Charles and swept right past Charles….

        Once Charles’s old hard tyres started to warm up, he was able to defend a little bit better

    3. For me, he still isn’t a world champ. If the rules were followed in Abu Dhabi regarding the safety car, Lewis Hamilton wins the 2021 WDC. But Masi had other ideas..

      Looks like he will win 2022, so only then will i accept him as a legitimate world champ

      1. So, is Lewis not 2008 WDC in your opinion. After all, he would have easily lost if not for Briatore engineering a crash in Singapore.

        For the record, not a Max fan and thought the Masi call was BS, but bad luck/bad stewarding decisions factors in every close WDC and Lewis had much more good luck over the season than Max.

      2. If the rules were followed, all of the lapped cars would have been allowed to un-lap themselves promptly and we would have had the same result that we ended up with.

        Don’t believe me, go listen to Alonso and Vettels on board comments during the final safety car period.

  2. Having grown up in a similar situation, entering elite levels of a sport at a very young age, a father that was pretty “harsh/pushy/brutal”, I must say I am amazed at how grounded Max is and for the most part has been since entering F1.

    For me, the impact of father, and overall pressure had a far more negative outcome which I consider myself fortunate to survive. Even more fortunately I walked away from that sport and found another interest.

    I still cringe at the sight of fathers looking over the shoulder of their very young sons during breaks in action at sporting events and cringe even more when I see them doing what looks like lecturing.

    When F1 changed the rules to ensure drivers were 18, I was delighted. There is just too much that can go wrong mentally for someone younger than that being thrust into the limelight at a younger age.

    1. some racing fan
      6th July 2022, 1:14

      Jos Verstappen is a lunatic with a specific degree of emotional problems. That’s why he’s gotten into trouble with the authorities as much as he has.

      1. Yep, you can see those red flags all over the place. Once Max decides he doesn’t need him anymore who knows what he’s gonna do.

        Also I don’t know much about her, but Max’s mom is surely an important part of his success as well, otherwise imagine what it would’ve been just growing up with Jos.

        1. True. And his mother was a very accomplished racer as well. I thunk she must have given the quieter more introvert part of the mental preparation and perhaps some of the talent too :))

        2. @mantresx Sophia was a karting champ and is a pretty okay person from what I’ve heard.

        3. I think Max doesn’t need Jos anymore that is why Jos isn’t at the most races anymore. Max’s mum Sophie is a very kind women and can drive. Maybe Max can bring her a birthday present a ride in a F1 car….

    2. Thanks for sharing that. My son is just entering competitive league sports and already organizers have to announce warnings to parents on the sidelines to stop abusing the coaches and refs. Of course imagine what these parents are like after the game with the kids.

      There is wanting your kid to learn to work hard and value success. Then there is vicariously living through them to try to remedy your own shortcomings.

      1. +1 very good!

    3. @dbradock 100% agree with you and was in the same situation as you.

      I remember telling my parents if this is what being a champion is all about, then I don’t want to try to be a champion for another minute. I actually ended up doing very well competitively to fulfill the given expectations but hated every single moment of it and I totally cringe looking back at it. It truly sucked, bad memories of it and brought no joy or pride doing it; they had to literally drag me out of bed to do it.

      Like you, I had since pursued other interests with a smile and later on coached successfully. When it came to youths, I always preached to them about finding the love and passion in what their competing in but most importantly have fun while doing it; if you can’t then go find something else, no shame otherwise it will eat you up and effect other parts of your life. Winning is not easy, it’s extremely hard but when you keep wanting to wake up before your alarm clock to go train and compete, then pride, smiles and success typical comes with it.

      I hope that was the case for Max.

    4. Congrats with your CotD.
      Maybe the impact of your father helped you to share wise words ;)

    5. @dbradock @dmw
      Thanks for sharing. I’m a ‘saturday-side-line-dad’ but I never competed in sports myself. Although most of them are fine, I see plenty of parents on the side of the pitch either pushing their kids in a bad (my opinion) way. Encouraging to be selfish and not look at their teammates. Encouraging aggression. Hurling abuse at the ref, etc. It’s all I hate about sports.
      I try my best not to do any of that. My first question when he gets off the pitch is always if he had fun..
      And thanks for adding a view from the kids perspective. It’s a motivator to do better.

      1. forgot to add @redpill, thanks for the perspective

    6. @dbradock A personal question that you are of course free to answer or decline. What is your relationship like now between yourself and your Dad? Does your ‘survival’ include an intact relationship with him? That you still cringe when you see strict parental behaviour or lecturing makes me wonder if your Dad never made a solid case (that you could come to terms with) for why he treated you as he did. Again…if I’m being too nosey that’s fair and understandable.

      1. @robbie, he passed quite a few years ago. By then we were on speaking terms but I never felt that he saw me as being anything other than a bit of a disappointment.
        I’m sure he had his reasons and I was quite well aware of them, but there’s no case he could have made for the sort of behavior that I’d be really satisfied with. Its not really the strictness that is the issue, I really don’t have a problem with that, it’s the sort of things that Max described – being told you didn’t do well enough even after you’d won convincingly and the lack of anything like empathy if I’d had a loss.

        1. @dbradock Thank you for sharing that. I wish it had been otherwise for you, but am happy that you are the survivor that you today.

          1. @dbradock Sorry, should have been ‘the survivor that you are today.’

    7. @dbradock

      Great COTD man. I completely agree.. drivers are now defenseless against DRS. It’s a shame that push to pass has reduced the fun of good defensive driving. They need to reduce the slot gap in the DRS to make sure it. gives a slight boost instead of a push to pass system.

  3. some racing fan
    6th July 2022, 1:19

    I stopped reading when Piquet said he was close to Bolsonaro. Anyone who is close to that maniac and idiot deserves no attention. I and so many others used to admire Piquet so much… he was a great driver but as a person is enormously disappointing.

    1. Robertob (@)
      6th July 2022, 18:07

      That’s the reason why stopped admiring Lewis. Never saw such a hypocrite. I snd so many others used to admire Lewis so much…. He is a great driver but as a person is enormously disappointing

  4. Many would consider referring to as someone coloured to be an archaic and offensive term.

    1. @spencer, true, but how else do we recognise that some (many) still categorise peoples ancestral background in a positive or negative way? Words that become accepted descriptors become unacceptable once they become the main word used for a group, especially by it’s critics. Perhaps we could embody positive connotations like “melanin blessed” but essentially haters gonna hate, and we need some way to call that out without being labelled negatively for recognising that racism still exists.

    2. We’re all coloured, one way or another. Hamilton just happens to be a more distinctive colour.

      But if people weren’t complaining about his skin colour (which is a bit like complaining the sky is blue on a clear day), they’d be complaining about his jewelry, his tattoos, his clothing, his hair…

      Basing your opinion of someone on their skin colour, regardless of what it is– THAT is the archaic concept.

  5. Magnussen makes that age-old mistake of neglecting to consider the other side of the coin.
    If the sprint didn’t set the grid, is there enough incentive to fight for a higher position?
    Given how important track position (still) is in F1, I say no, there isn’t. The sprint must still set the grid for it to be effective.
    In that sense, it’s more important than the GP is – as the entire grid is set from the sprint result, whereas points only go as low as the midfield.

    1. I don’t get this.

      If the sprint is a standalone race, with its own points-rewarding system, of course there is enough incentive: those damn points. Kevin suggests a F2/F3 format, with two races, being the second the most important, and the first a sprint-like race with less points. He’s not “inventing” anything.

      1. I think the sprint should be the only for a extra race with points nothing more.

      2. Yeah, the sprint pays points – but what if you are 9th? There’s nothing going on back there points-wise – but it still means a lot because it sets the grid.
        You know there are 20 cars and drivers in F1, right? Not just 8 or 10….

        F2/F3’s system works well too, not just because the qualifying session sets a grid, but because one of those races uses a half-reverse grid. As in, there’s something to fundamentally differentiate the two races from each other, other than just distance.
        If you are suggesting that F1 should use the same format as F2/F3 – then I’d totally support that too, for the reverse grid aspect.

        What I’m not so keen on, though, is having a session that means absolutely nothing to 60% of the field. It’s just an expense, which many teams would likely not bother with.

        1. I get your point. But by the same logic – a grand prix itself is just a meaningless expense for 50% of the grid. The teams at the back still for the most part drive and race till the end even if the chance of scoring points is miniscule. I don’t see much difference to a sprint race that awards points for the top 8 rather than top 10.

          1. The GP still counts minor positions for championship order in the event of a countback, @keithedin.
            I’ll admit I have no idea if the sprint does that also – but in reality, what is the chance that it would be necessary to count that far back?

            And we do still see cars pulling out of GP’s to save engines and gearboxes on occasion. Even for damage as small as a puncture or damaged front wing (or just being off the pace generally) they’ll retire when they are so far back that there’s no option but to accept that there’s no chance for points – or for media exposure.

    2. KMag is right, the current Sprint format makes little sense.

      I’d rather we stick to the usual weekend format (if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it) but if most stakeholders want Sprint let’s make it standard for all races for fairness sake – not all circuits are suited for all cars equally, so making some pay more points can be seen as unfair. So let’s have one regular qualifying session on Friday that sets the grid for both the Sprint on Saturday and Grand Prix for Sunday. Run the Sprint with full reverse grid. Have it pay 9-6-4-3-2-1 points (the old “classic” one). Then have the regular race on Sunday for regular 25-18-15-etc points. And have just one fastest lap extra point for the whole weekend – carry over the one from Saturday to Sunday and see if anyone can better it.

  6. If Rossi wasn’t leaving Andretti at the end of the season, he would be after that race. I have to suspect Grosjean is on a very short leash for the rest of the season. That was just an embarrassing display by both of them throughout the race.

  7. “He was always the opposite. He would tell me I was going to be a truck driver or like a bus driver.”

    I guess it was about 10 years ago that I was driving my bus around downtown Auckland when I saw three people wanted to get onto my bus. There were two men and a lad. As the lad got onto my bus God said to me “He is the greatest driver ever … the greatest F1 driver ever.” The lad, of course, was Max Verstappen, and one of the men with him was Jos Verstappen.
    I’ve had thousands of people get onto my bus, but that was the only time I ever had that experience. I’ve also had Lewis get onto my bus, and several other F1 drivers as well, and God never said anything to me about them.

  8. I’m surprised this dig at Verstappen by Hamilton didn’t make into a round-up or a full article by now.

    I wonder if Newey, while driving older cars he designed and cars that he didn’t, gathers any insights he can still use in today’s cars.

    Sprint races are silly, but I just had an entire discussion somewhere else on this site and I’m not going over it again :)

    1. Clearly, he forgot who got the penalty ;-)

      1. Well actually I’m surprised (and not surprised) that there’s absolutely no reflection on Hamilton’s behaviour last year compared to this year, while some very similar things happened. Also because it was the moment where the gloves really came off in the championship, a reason many Verstappen fans didn’t feel very sorry for Hamilton in Abu Dhabi later in the year (although the incidents were completely different, of course). To compare:

        Hamilton causes a huge crash by understeering into Verstappen at Copse. The race gets red flagged and only gets underway when it’s clear Verstappen is ok. Hamilton goes on to win and doesn’t give a thing about the guy he sent into a 51G crash. There’s a huge row afterwards.

        There’s a huge crash in Copse. The race gets red flagged and only gets underway when it’s clear Zhou is ok. Hamilton is passed around Copse in a similar move like last year (though this time he manages not to understeer into, in this case, Leclerc). He goes on to finish 3rd and suddenly is able to say a thing or two about the crash Zhou was involved in, right after getting out of the car. Then goes on to have a dig at Verstappen afterwards.

        I’m sure fierce competition brings out the worst in people, but it’s unfair to never highlight it when Saint Lewis the Great shows rough edges under pressure.

    2. oofff.. that’s actually pretty bad

  9. I don’t know Max’s parental situation with Kelly and Daniil’s son, but I do hope that if he becomes a father one day he doesn’t follow Jos’s mode of parenting.

    1. Jos has many serious shortcomings in the ‘anger management’ and ‘domestic abuse’ field.

      But his pure ‘parenting skills’ outside of the above issues seem okay; Max doesn’t seem a person who needs mental support due to his tough childhood.

  10. By the way, odd COTD. The reader probably missed Emilia-Romagna 2022, a race without DRS for the better part of it, and it was awful. Of course we all hate DRS, but it’s obvious we still need it. The difference between a DRS train and a race with no DRS is pretty small.

    1. @diezcilindros
      I disagree with that conclusion. Yes there was hardly any passing and we love to see some action, so it is totally fair to say the GP was lacking in that respect. And yes, DRS was disabled for most of the race. But it is not cause and effect. The real reason passing was difficult was because of the drying track. It’s already a challenging track for overtaking, but with only 1 dry line it’s just not going to happen. But there is no amount of DRS that would fix that for that specific track, for that specific track condition.

      In fact, early in that race when there wasn’t a dry line yet we could see some action. Like Stroll and Magnussen fighting for position. Stroll attacking, Magnussen defending. And that was without DRS.

  11. “I am very close to president Bolsonaro and I think he is very good for Brazil. But the press in Brazil is very negative about him and anything they can do to discredit him they will do, so if they discredit me, it rubs off on him”

    “It has caused me some problems but to be honest with you I don’t really care.”

    The more Piquet talks, the more you learn he needs to be kept away from youth and race tracks. When looking back at his history and what he’s done and said, he really is not a nice or good person.

    1. And yet his comments are being shared over and over again on this site.
      (read this comment whilst it’s still here)

    2. I did not feel up to it to even read the article @redpill just from seeing the highlighted line in the title where he clearly shows how completely useless his so called “excuse” was. And yeah, I agree that we really don’t need to hear any more from the guy.

    3. He is honest though. Piquet is the victim here.

  12. The whole Piquet saga reminds me of when our former PM only a few months ago said in an interview that he was blessed not to have any children with a disability. Probably perfectly fine to say in his circle of friends but tone deaf at best and outright offensive at worst when giving a recorded interview…

    1. What on earth is offensive about that?

      1. He was at a debate. And a mother of a child with a disability specifically got up to ask him a question about why his government is terrible at caring about or ever giving support to people with disabilities, and what he’s going to do about it, and his first comment in response was to go ‘well first of all, Jenny and I have been blessed to not have any children with a disability…’ then whatever other of his usual disgraceful nonsense he spits out.

        I’ll remind you this man is a proper, hardcore, gross, evangelical, pentecostal crazy who genuinely believes in speaking in tongues and subscribes obviously in every analysis of his character, to prosperity gospel. He’s not merely saying like ‘people who don’t have a disability are lucky!’ which isn’t TOO offensive (though it’s still not great and not how you should be speaking or thinking). It’s because he doesn’t give a second thought to people like that, he considers them subhuman. He wasn’t saying ‘blessed’ colloquially. In his mind, he believes his wife and him have been BLESSED BY GOD, rewarded, for their god-fearing goodness, by the great and wonderful blessing of prosperity, success, money and able-bodied children. That’s the context any such parent of a child with a disability goes into asking that question fully knowing. They know he’s not going to help them. They’re not sincerely asking ‘what are you going to do?” They’re trying to, politely, to not get kicked out on live tv, go ‘why are you an ableist pig and can you please in this next election cycle make even the slightest effort to not be an awful bigot of a person’ but knowing there’s probably no chance.

        And the clueless fool’s response, the FIRST THING he think of, is ‘aww gee well you know unlike you WE’RE lucky to not have to deal with having disabled kids haha yay!’

        It was horrendous…yet also not, because it is just words and everyone did fundamentally over-react. I know where you’re coming and am not criticising you because it doesn’t seem super offensive without context. But the context is that Scott Morrison is a long-known disgusting, heartless, soulless, empty populist commercial vessel of a man with absolutely no beliefs, values or convictions other than how to get ahead in the world and his own self-assurance that he most righteously deserves it, and that anyone he can look down from his ivory tower as leader of the nation, specifically is beneath him and less deserving.

        1. Yep, got all that and satisfied he doesn’t ruin – sorry, run – the country anymore, but I still don’t think this comment is offensive.
          A lot of his ideas, actions and comments are – but not that one.

          1. S, comments like that one are considered parent-blaming and ableist, thus manage the feat of being offensive on two separate counts.

          2. And lots of people would agree with you. When you use that sort of language to the wider populace (a huge portion of which is now non-religious in Australia), some people will take offence. From what I’ve read on the Piquet matter, the term he used has been interpreted as innocuous to some but horrifically racist to others. Probably best not use it in an interview…and knowing the wide interpretations, he (and others) probably should just retire the use of the word altogether.

          3. comments like that one are considered parent-blaming and ableist

            What sort of twisted mind puts that spin on them, @alianora-la-canta?
            Someone intolerant trying to create trouble and division, I suspect.

            Religious or not, @tommy-c, makes no difference to the core of the comment.
            Is it suddenly so bad to admit that you feel extremely lucky that you don’t have cancer or weren’t born with a development deficiency? That you don’t need special/intensive care or will (subjectively) live a life of reduced quality and freedom?
            Taking things for granted is generally seen as a poor personality trait – yet this is an example of the exact opposite. And that offends some people too….
            Talk about being in a no-win situation.

  13. Bus or truck driver, LOL.

    Sprint effectively has to determine race starting order, as otherwise, having such a session wouldn’t really serve any purpose.

    So Newey has an RB5, RB6, & MP4-19, at least these three cars he’s designed, if not more.

    I already replied to COTD in the original article, but Red Bull Ring & Interlagos Sprints would be good for DRS-free experimentation.
    Otherwise, I only really agree on the DRS train part that has appeared occasionally, although DRS-assisted passes themselves are rarely easy-looking as I’ve alluded a few times before, mostly limited to Kemmel straight.

  14. let the DRS deactivate as soon as the front wheels of the overtaker are aligned with the back wheels of the overtaken

    1. This solution is too technical for modern F1….

  15. Haha Piquet is so funny. One of those hilarious examples of someone who isn’t *TECHNICALLY* wrong, their point just isn’t the validating slam dunk they think it is. :P

    “I think people are letting my being a known bad man, including my support of another known even worse bad man, confirming just how bad a man I am, influence their opinion that I’m a bad man who did a bad thing!”

    Yeah, of course you’re being a racist and supporting Bolsonaro are related. Because you’re a disgraceful person.

  16. I hear snippets of Jos The Boss being very pushy with Max when he was a child. It may be that it was all loving encouragement by a nurturing parent who wanted nothing more than his child to succeed (and I really do think Max Verstappen is a supreme racing talent, AND still getting better!). But on the other hand, I wouldn’t be surprised if in years to come there’ll be a Netflix documentary about the multiple F1 champion who was robbed of a childhood and would trade in the trophies if it meant not having to live under the abusive tyranny of an overbearing father.

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