Max Verstappen’s main motivation factor revealed by his father

Thomas Maher
Max Verstappen, Red Bull, holds winner's trophy. Belgium, July 2023.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull, holds the winner's trophy and bottle. Belgium, July 2023.

Jos Verstappen has revealed the motivation his son Max has to keep racing at the very top level in Formula 1.

With the younger Verstappen winning race after race, taking his tally to 10 so far this season, both he and Red Bull look set to smash long-standing records for dominance within the sport.

Verstappen has a 125-point lead heading to his home race at Zandvoort to kick off the second half of the season and, realistically, there isn’t much standing between him and another win aside from unreliability or a mistake.

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Verstappen can match the record for consecutive wins at Zandvoort – nine wins in a row would draw him level with Sebastian Vettel’s impressive 2013 run, also for Red Bull.

Given that it would be very easy to lose concentration with such a command of the sport, Verstappen has made precious few errors, and his ex-F1 racing driver father Jos has revealed the mentality his son is taking to his championship push as he homes in on a third consecutive driver’s title.

“Max wants to show who is the best,” he said, as quoted by F1-Insider.com.

“He has done that again [at Spa]. He’s full of [confidence], but that’s also difficult: always being there, in every practice, qualifying, and race – but that’s what he’s doing at the moment.”

But while Verstappen may be bringing a particularly high level of driving talent to the car, Verstappen senior also paid tribute to the monumental effort being put in by Red Bull to allow their driver to perform at his best.

“Of course, you need a good vehicle and that’s what he has: Max together with Red Bull, it just works. It’s unbelievable, like a dream, only even better,” he told ServusTV, a Red Bull-owned television channel.

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Max himself agreed with his father’s assessment, also paying tribute to the effort Jos put in to give him an eye for details.

“I always want more and try to look at every single situation to see what could have been done better,” the Red Bull driver said.

“But that’s also how I was brought up, to always want more and to look at details, even when people say that everything is great or great – there are always things you can do better.

“I’ve been on the other side too, when you chase wins but it’s never enough because you don’t have the package. So, of course, I’m enjoying it at the moment, but at the same time, I know that it will stop at a certain point. That’s why we have to savour it now, keep learning and try to improve.”

Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko, who recently said he believes Verstappen could qualify more lowly machinery on pole position, admitted it’s possible the Milton Keynes-based squad could go on to win every single race this year to clinch the all-time record for team dominance – no other team has ever managed it during the sport’s history, with McLaren’s 1988 run seeing them only fail at one of the 16 races that year.

“We want to continue this now, of course,” Marko said.

“It’s unlikely and unrealistic, but we’re beginning to think it might be possible.”

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