As Max Verstappen made Formula 1 history with his 10th grand prix win in a row, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff dismissed that as just a pretty stat for “Wikipedia”.
Verstappen tied Sebastian Vettel’s record of nine consecutive wins with victory on home soil at Zandvoort last weekend, and was forced to defeat the hard-fighting Ferrari of Carlos Sainz to ensure that he set a new outright standard at Monza.
That makes it 12 victories overall in an utterly dominant F1 2023 campaign for Verstappen, while Red Bull remain on course for Formula 1’s first ever undefeated season.
Toto Wolff reflects on Max Verstappen “Wikipedia” achievement
Even in the era of Mercedes dominance, such standards could not be set, with Nico Rosberg’s streak of seven wins on the trot the longest winning run they enjoyed.
Wolff though suggested Verstappen’s achievement is not of great interest to him or Verstappen himself, but will look pretty on Wiki.
“Our situation was a little bit different because we had two guys fighting against each other within the team,” Wolff told Sky F1, in reference to the rivalry between Lewis Hamilton and Rosberg.
“I don’t know if he cares about the records. It is not something that would be important for me, those numbers, it is for Wikipedia and nobody reads that anyway.”
If the fine margins of the Italian Grand Prix had have changed course, then Mercedes could even have scored a double podium, with race winner Max Verstappen having nursed a late reliability scare, while Ferrari duo Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc came dangerously close to contact as they battled over the last podium spot.
P5 it was though for George Russell and P6 for Hamilton, the former receiving a five-second penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage when battling Esteban Ocon, while Hamilton picked up a five-second penalty for causing a collision with McLaren’s Oscar Piastri.
A decent result for the team then considering all of that, and the fact that Monza was not a venue high on the list for suiting their W14 challenger.
Wolff though urged caution over finding satisfaction in a P5 and P6 finish.
“Lots of incidents but you need to be careful not to be too happy about a fifth and a sixth,” said Wolff. “I think we maximised what was in there today.
“I think both penalties you can justify so we are going to look at that and how we can prevent it in the future.”
Mercedes remain P2 in the Constructors’ standings, now 45 points ahead of Ferrari a position behind.