Massa: Verstappen too young for F1

Date published: March 10 2015

Max Verstappen will become Formula 1's youngest-ever driver in Australia, but Felipe Massa feels he is too young.

The 17-year-old Dutchman will follow in his father Jos' footsteps when he climbs into the cockpit of the Toro Rosso STR10 for a full race weekend at Albert Park.

STR's decision to promote him at such a tender age has raised questions, but those close to the teenager insists he is ready for F1.

Massa, who made his debut at 20, believes Verstappen is joining the grid "too early".

"Despite all the talent he has… I think he's coming in too early," he told Brazilian media. "I came into Formula One at 20 – and I felt I lacked experience."

Meanwhile, the 33-year-old veteran is convinced his Williams team will be in the mix at this weekend's season-opening Australian Grand Prix even though Mercedes are "well out in front".

"(But) based on what we've been showing, (Williams) are right there in the mix to be the second force in Formula One," he told Estado de S Paulo.

"The car is competitive and we're on the up."