Jos Verstappen: Max is ready for F1

Tuesday 19-August-2014 15:22

Jos Verstappen, father of Formula One's latest recruit Max, insists his son can make the step up, saying he is able to "adapt and learn tremendously fast".

Verstappen Jr, who will turn 17 in September, will become the sport's youngest driver next year after Toro Rosso confirmed he will partner 20-year-old Russian Daniil Kvyat.

The move has raised a few eyebrows due to Max's age and his father Jos, who drove for the likes of Benetton,Tyrrell, Stewart, Arrows and Minardi during his F1 career, admits it's been a nervous few weeks.

"The last couple of weeks felt surreal. We were in the middle of the negotiations and so much stuff was coming our way," Verstappen senior said on his son's official website.

"You're constantly questioning yourself: Is this the right choice, is it too early? Now that the decision has been made, Jos is able to answer these questions.

"He'll turn 17 next month and is on his way into Formula 1. He won't have the experience but it's been a well thought through decision and in the end I'm the one that knows Max best. People need to realise that Max is able to adapt and learn tremendously fast."

Verstappen Jr has been driving in the FIA European Formula 3 Championship this year and only made his Formula Renault debut recently, but his father insists being fast-tracked into F1 sometimes works out better than driving in feeder series.

He added: "I mean, Max got into a Formula Renault 3.5 for the first time last week. He just got in and drove off with extraordinary pace. He is so in control that he'll be able to understand and master driving an F1 car.

Some critics will suggest a year or two in GP2 or FR 3.5 would ease Max into F1 as the lap times between GP2 and Formula 1 don't differ that much. Jos disagrees.

"Plenty of drivers didn't make it through GP2 so after carefully deliberating with Max, Raymond and Red Bull, we came to the conclusion that F1 is the best option for Max."

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