Max Verstappen installing racing sim in his £12million private jet

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

Helmut Marko has revealed Max Verstappen is taking the unusual step of adding a racing simulator to his private jet.

A simple assumption to make about a racing driver would be that, when they’re taking to the air for a long-haul flight to a distant country, they’d switch off entirely from their day-to-day job.

But two-time F1 World Champion Max Verstappen has decided that, rather than whiling away the hours engrossed in a book or a movie or the company of girlfriend Kelly Piquet, he’d rather be racing.

The Dutch driver recently went viral on social media after images circulated of him squirreled away in the corner of an otherwise-empty apartment, using his state-of-the-art racing simulator – the explanation being that Verstappen was in the middle of an apartment move, with the simulator being moved last.

Max Verstappen’s private jet to be kitted out with racing simulator

Helmut Marko was recently asked about Verstappen’s exploits in the Virtual Le Mans 24 Hours, and whether the 25-year-old will be focusing on ‘proper racing’ as he aims to claim his third consecutive world title.

“The opposite is the case,” Marko told Germany’s Sport1.

He even had his private plane converted so that he can fly a simulator in the air in the future. But that’s a good thing, too, because Max needs this distraction. In any case, it didn’t do him any harm when it came to his two titles…”

Of course, with internet connections at 30,000 feet not known for their stability or speed, Verstappen may have to use his in-air simulator just for keeping sharp rather than battling for Le Mans victory with his online racing team Redline…

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Max Verstappen furious after Le Mans debacle

Verstappen recently made headlines after furiously lashing out at organisers of the Virtual Le Mans 24 Hours, after the Dutch driver’s race was ruined by temperamental server issues – and not for the first time.

Organisers had to enforce red flags after the two servers being used for the event were at the centre of a security breach, while drivers were also being disconnected from the race itself due to server instability.

Having been leading the race, Verstappen’s own live stream showed the Dutch driver sitting back in resignation with his arms folded after being disconnected.

“They call it amazingly bad luck…well this is just incompetence,” Verstappen said.

“They can’t even control their own game. This the third time already that has happened to me now, being kicked off the game while doing this race.

“This is also the last time ever because what’s the point? You prepare for five months to try and win this Championship, you are leading the Championship, you try to win this race which you have prepared for for two months and they handle it like this.

“Honestly, it is a joke. You cannot even call it an event. It’s a clown show.

“That’s why it’s better to retire the car because driving around in P15 for six hours makes no sense for everyone. It’s a disgrace with all the effort we have put in as a team.

“I really hope the organisers consider where they put this game going forward because on this platform it’s not going to work.

“It’s game over. I think I have more chance if I just go to Vegas and the casino…I would have more chance to win.

“I think I’m going to uninstall the game. That’s nice…frees up a bit of space on the PC anyway. And I really hope everyone uninstalls the game.”