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The Youngest Driver In Formula 1 Divides Opinion
17-year-old Formula 1 racing driver, Max Verstappen, has been making quite a splash since his debut on the F1 circuit in March this year. The son of former Dutch F1 driver Jos Verstappen, Max is the youngest driver in Formula 1. Amazingly, he hadn’t passed his driving test when he joined the sport, so he was allowed to race around a track at 200mph but not allowed to drive on public roads. He has since passed his test and due to a regulation change, his record as the youngest driver to compete in Formula 1 will stand, as the minimum age for a super license (the kind you need to get) pay to compete on the road) has been. He turned 18 years old.
Despite his famous father’s background, Max has earned his place in F1 with talent. He quickly rose through the ranks of Red Bull’s young driver program and beat several other talented youngsters to secure a drive for Red Bull’s sister team in F1, Torro Rosso. It was widely expected that despite his talent, Max would not be able to cope with the pressure of the sport, which is a merciless medium if drivers underperform. Many of Max’s predecessors in the Torro Rosso team have been sacked for sub-standard performances, sometimes mid-season. One former Torro Rosso driver has gone on to achieve greatness in the sport. Sebastian Vettel joined Red Bull from Torro Rosso and won 4 consecutive world championships between 2010-2013.
Verstappen, however, has stepped up and consistently exceeded expectations this season. He was praised for his bold adventures as well as his apparent speed. Sometimes when things didn’t go according to plan, it was due to mechanical failures beyond his control. Red Bull boss Dr Helmut Marko recently told current Red Bull drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kyvaat to pull up their socks as their counterparts in the sister team, Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz, were leaving.
The young Dutchman’s fortunes changed last week when Formula 1 headed to Monaco for what is believed to be the crowning glory of the F1 season. Verstappen silenced his critics in the ‘free practice’ sessions before the race on Thursday by driving around the street in the 3rd fastest time. Fellow drivers and racing experts alike praise the Max for its speed around a circuit that is extremely difficult to master with its narrow track and narrow bends that leave no room for error. But his inexperience on race day as he tried to overtake Romain Grosjean’s Lotus at the Sainte Devote corner resulted in a major crash.
He put his car in prime position for the French to win. Verstappen was caught when Grosjean braked earlier than expected before the corner and crashed into the right rear wheel of the Lotus. Verstappen’s left front brake broke on impact and his car hit the barrier at 100 mph. The Lotus was able to continue without any apparent damage and fortunately, Verstappen escaped the crash unscathed. Those watching the race live on TV have the best angle of the crash because the live footage at the time was from the rear camera next to the driver’s helmet.
After the crash, Verstappen blamed Grosjean for flying too fast, but after an investigation by the race stewards who manage controversies and incidents, Verstappen was found to have caused the collision and was banned from the next race in Canada by the grid. was punished. On June 5-7, they received 2 penalty points on their driver’s license. The youngster has since been philosophical, saying that he is a rookie and will make some mistakes, which the team expects from time to time. At the same time, he knows that if he joins the Red Bull team in the future, such mistakes will not be accepted. We look forward to seeing Max back from this event at the Canadian Grand Prix at the Gilles Villeneuve circuit in Montréal. For more information, plus tickets and all the latest Formula 1 news, visit http://cheapf1tickets.com.
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