Alain Prost addresses F1 fan complaints over Max Verstappen and Red Bull dominance

Henry Valantine
Four-time F1 champ Alain Prost smiling. Monaco, May 2022.

Four-time F1 champ Alain Prost smiling in the Monaco harbour.

Four-time World Champion Alain Prost believes fans and teams “can only say congratulations” in seasons such as 2023, with Max Verstappen and Red Bull having dominated the year.

Verstappen won a record 19 races in the season, with two from Sergio Perez making it 21 wins from 22 for the whole year for Red Bull.

Prost has experience of this kind of dominance in his own career, having fought for title glory in dominant McLaren and Williams machinery in years gone by, and even though he understands fans’ frustrations at one driver winning most races, he thought it was a “great” spectacle.

Alain Prost: ‘I understand if it’s frustrating, but I thought it was great’

Prost formed one half of the formidable McLaren partnership alongside Ayrton Senna that held a near-monopoly on F1 wins in the late 1980s, with the two winning all 15 of the 16 rounds of the 1988 season between them.

But having taken his own interests out of the picture, now that he is no longer affiliated to anyone in the pit lane, he believes fans should appreciate the spectacle of seeing a team at the peak of their powers go to work as they do race after race.

“I looked at it like a fan, as I’m no longer involved with any team,” Prost told Sky Deutschland.

“Many have said that it’s negative because a team and driver dominate. I always recognise it when a team drives like Red Bull and Max.

“When someone dominates like that, it’s the sum of the work that’s needed. You can only say congratulations.

“You have to work better if you want to get to this level. I understand if it’s frustrating sometimes, but I thought it was great.” recommends

Where are they now? The 24 F1 drivers who raced in the F1 2003 season

Five big rule changes the FIA has introduced to reel in dominant Formula 1 teams

As for Verstappen himself, he overtook both Prost and Sebastian Vettel in the all-time F1 win charts in the course of the season, moving onto 54 for his career with victory in Aby Dhabi on Sunday.

Now with three titles under his belt and few doubting that more are likely to be on the way in future, the four-time champion believes that the Red Bull driver is a “special” talent who should be lauded for speaking his mind alongside his racing exploits.

“We all had our driving styles and approaches. Max is still very young, but the focus he has had on his career from the beginning and the passion for motorsport are very important,” Prost explained.

“He always says what he thinks. You don’t often see someone so dedicated to their sport.

“It’s something special with him: he’s always faster and gains more experience.”

Read next: Ranked: Every unique livery from F1 2023 with tough fight for No.1 spot