David Coulthard: ‘Only an idiot would say Max Verstappen’s success is only because of the car’

Sam Cooper
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen speaks to Sky during the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Baku, June 2022.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen speaks to Sky during the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Baku, June 2022.

David Coulthard has said that anyone who claims Max Verstappen’s success is solely down to the car is “an idiot.”

The Dutchman has been in dominating form in the last two seasons. Winning 25 races in two years and amassing 854.5 points, 227 more than any other driver.

But despite, the Red Bull man still has his detractors. Maybe point to the conclusion of the 2021 season or the minor cost cap breach while, just as Lewis Hamilton has been told, some claim it is all to do with the car rather than the driver.

One man who does not believe that is Coulthard who suggested that anyone who though Verstappen’s success was 100% due to the car was a “f**king idiot.”

“Just as Lewis doesn’t need nine World titles for me to consider him one of the greatest drivers in the sport, Max doesn’t need three to be considered one of the best,” Coulthard told Formule1.nl.

“Max is already one of the greats. You would also have to be a f**king idiot to claim that he only achieved this ‘because he was in a good car.’

“After all, none of his team-mates have been able to measure up to him. Max is a beast on the track, a winning machine who doesn’t give a s**t about what we have to say or what anyone else has to say. He’s incredible.”

Max Verstappen has shown he is more than just the car beneath him

The notion that Verstappen is only now successful because of the RB18 is somewhat fanciful considering his achievements in the sport.

Take a time when Mercedes were at their clinical best. Who was it that was the one non-Mercedes driver to win more than once? Verstappen.

The Dutchman has crossed the line first in at least two races in every season since 2017, a record that no other driver can currently claim to have done. There would also be few to argue that the Red Bull car was anywhere near better than Mercedes’ until 2021 at the earliest.

Coulthard also makes the point that if was purely down to the car, then Verstappen’s team-mate would have had just as much success than him. Perez’s two wins to Verstappen’s 15 in 2022 suggests otherwise.

The driver vs car debate has long ranged and will continue to do so but if there is one man who has the CV to show he is more than just the machinery beneath him, it is Max Verstappen.

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