Max dismisses Hamilton: ‘I have nothing to prove’

Finley Crebolder
Max Verstappen Red Bull

Max Verstappen PA

Max Verstappen has denied Lewis Hamilton’s claim that the Dutchman feels like he has a lot to prove this season.

This season, Hamilton and Verstappen are going head-to-head with largely even machinery for the first time since they have both been on the grid.

The Brit currently has the upper hand, winning three of the first four races, but Verstappen pushed him close in Bahrain and Barcelona.

Despite their close battles though, they have yet to come together on track, with the closest they’ve come to doing so being at the start in Barcelona when Verstappen bragged his way into the lead and Hamilton left just enough space.

Ahead of the race weekend in Monaco, the seven-time World Champion said that, as he is the one that feels he has less to prove, it is up to him to make sure they do not do so in the future.

“I think I’ve done well to avoid all the incidents so far. We’ve got 19 more [races] to go and we could connect – hopefully not,” he told reporters in Monaco.

“The good thing, I think, is there’s a nice balanced amount of respect between us.

“I think perhaps, as you know, he feels perhaps he has a lot to prove. I’m not necessarily in the same boat there. I’m more long term, kind of ‘it’s a marathon not a sprint’ sort of mentality, which is ultimately why I have the stats I have.

“So I’ll continue with that and I’ll do everything to make sure we avoid connecting.”

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Verstappen was asked about these comments later in the day and stated that he doesn’t feel that has to prove anything to anyone.

He also added that he has been equally as responsible for the two not crashing in the first four rounds of the season as his rival has.

“Nope, I have nothing to prove,” the Red Bull driver said.

“And avoiding contact, I think it goes both ways. So we have done well, that’s true. But yeah, we race hard, we avoided the contact on both sides.

“So let’s hope we can keep doing that and keep being on track and racing hard against each other.”

McLaren CEO Zak Brown has stated that it’s a matter of time before Hamilton and Verstappen do come together, but the latter has accused the American of just saying that to make headlines.

“I honestly don’t know what to say anymore about these things,” Verstappen said.

“We never try to crash, do we? It’s just to make a few interesting headlines like that.

“I guess it will have a bit more viewers when you say it’s a matter of time, and then instead of saying we had some great races so far. People will of course click that more.”

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