Kevin Magnussen on his own father-son dynamic with Max and Jos Verstappen in headlines

Henry Valantine
Kevin Magnussen alongside his father Jan Magnussen. Abu Dhabi, December 2022.

Kevin Magnussen with his father Jan.

Kevin Magnussen explained that, contrary to the very close intertwining of Max and Jos Verstappen, he “made it very clear” early on to his own racing father Jan that he “didn’t want his influence” in his career.

A former F1 driver himself who still competes in endurance racing, Magnussen Sr has kept a hands-off approach to his son’s career, at the Haas driver’s request, while the Verstappens take a much closer interest in their respective careers.

Kevin Magnussen asked about his own racing father-son dynamic

Jos Verstappen in particular has been in the headlines of late for speaking out against Red Bull team principal Christian Horner, publicly stating it would be “causing problems” if he stayed in his job after an internal investigation into alleged inappropriate behaviour by Red Bull GmbH was dismissed.

While son Max has sailed away to two race victories to start the season, in search of a fourth consecutive World Championship, the off-track speculation surrounding the team, fuelled by these comments, has led to further questions coming the 26-year-old Dutchman’s way – even going so far as wondering whether or not his contract with Red Bull will be fulfilled.

The questions surrounding the team are likely to be picked back up again in Australia next weekend, but as one of the only other drivers on the grid with a professional racing parent, while speaking to reporters in Saudi Arabia, Magnussen was asked about his own relationship with his father in comparison to the closeness the Verstappens hold in the paddock.

When asked if growing up in a racing family of his own brought about any difficulties, Magnussen responded: “Well, I think very early on in my career, I made it very clear to my dad that I didn’t want his influence.

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“I think he had to adjust to that, but I was very, very clear that I wanted this to be my journey, my project and he had his own career, so he should focus on that – and he’s been super good with that.

“I feel like that’s also given me… I feel like I’m my own, you know, I tried to learn from my dad as much as possible and it’s been a real privilege to have him to really feed off and then learn from and ask questions on all the way through my life.

“But then, when it comes to actually going racing and taking care of my own career, I didn’t want his influence.

“I’ve had my own team of people. I haven’t asked my dad, I haven’t picked his people or anything, I’ve just done my own thing. So I think that’s worked well.”

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