Current Max Verstappen

2015 sees the arrival of the youngest driver ever to sit in an F1 car. Max Verstappen was born on 30th September 1997 and, assuming he makes the grid in Australia, will only be 17 years and 167 days, beating Jaime Alguersuaris' record by 1 year and 323 days (assuming my maths is correct).

How can such a young man be ready for F1? As the son of former F1 driver Jos Verstappen Max started racing karts at 4½ years old. In 2006 he won the Belgian Minimax Championship in the KF5 category and in 2007 he won both the Dutch and Belgian titles as well as the Belgian Cadet Championship.

In 2009 he won the KF5 Flemish Championship and moved up to International Karting. In 2010 Max finished 2nd in the KF3 World Cup, won the Euro Series and the WSK World Series. In 2011 he again won the WSK World Series and moved up the KF2 class winning the WSK Master Series and the South Garda Winter Cup in 2012. In 2013, at 15 years of age, Verstappen won the World KZ Championship, which is highest level of karting.

For 2014 Max moved up to European Formula 3. He finished 3rd in the Championship winning 10 of the 33 races, more than those who finished above him in the title race. Max was recruited into the Red Bull Young Driver Programme in August 2014 and only 6 days later was announced as one of the drivers for Toro Rosso in F1 for 2015. Apparently he was also being courted by Mercedes for their young driver programme so you have to wonder how much the pull of an F1 seat at Toro Rosso drove the decision to go with Red Bull.

Having already taken part in 3 Friday sessions as a test driver Max Verstappen is the youngest person ever to take part in a Grand Prix weekend. If he acquits himself well during 2015 many will say it is an inspired decision. If he turns into a mobile chicane or treats F1 like a destruction derby I'm sure many questions will be asked as to why someone not even old enough to qualify for a driving licence in his home country is allowed to get behind the wheel of a car at the pinnacle of motorsport.

Future Champion? One season (or even one race) wonder? 2015 will be very interesting for Max Verstappen.
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
A driver says another driver only won because of their car? *Falls down flabbergasted*

This has only happened in the close season every single season I have ever watched in F1. Seriously every year and every champion since 1990 has been accused of only winning because of the car. Not one exception.

Senna 90? Car
Senna 91? Car
Mansell 92? Car with bells on
Prost 93? Car car car
Schumacher 94? Car had active suspension
Schumacher 95? Car
Hill 96? Car
Vilenurve 97? Car
Hakeinen 98? Car
Hakeinen 99? Schumacher broke leg...(and car)
Schumacher 00 to 04? Car and cheating
Alonso 05 - 06? Best car
Kimi 07? Fix due to racism
Hamilton 08? Fix and car
Button 09? Car!
Vettel 10 - 14? So much car that grown men have hate campaign against him
Hamilton 15? Car
Rosberg 16? So much car Indy Car drivers mock it
Hamilton 17 - 18? Car car car car car.

My only conclusion is that all F1 drivers are in fact rubbish and without assistance couldn't even get it lined up straight in a family parking spot in Tesco.

What we need is Robots
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
There are two big differences between now and the previous eras:

1. The current rules have enshrined the Mercedes advantage by limiting development, primarily of the power unit, to a degree never seen before in the sport.

2. The budgets have ballooned to the point where only manufacturers have a prayer of being competitive. Compare the defense-program-sized budget of Mercedes to, say, the Williams of the late 90s, or even Ferrari in the Schumacher era. The Cosworth era budgets would be laughable today. Why do you think Williams and McLaren can't compete? Did they suddenly become totally inept?
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
Whilst I'm not saying you're wrong the 'other eras were different from now' and 'its never been like this in the sport' arguments have also been around for as long as I've been watching. If it's not driver aids it's traction control, if it's not traction control it's the close relationship with the FIA, if it's not close relationship with FIA its blown diffuser.

It's the same song, with the same beat but just a slightly different instrumental.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
The intro to Autocourse in 1980, the year Alan Jones won the title, has a wonderful article entitled "Does the driver matter anymore?". Plus ca change
 

Izumi

Banned
There are two big differences between now and the previous eras:
The current rules have enshrined the Mercedes advantage by limiting development, primarily of the power unit, to a degree never seen before in the sport.
That's correct. Damage caused to the series is yet to be fully assessed and appreciated.

There are two big differences between now and the previous eras:
The budgets have ballooned to the point where only manufacturers have a prayer of being competitive. Compare the defense-program-sized budget of Mercedes to, say, the Williams of the late 90s, or even Ferrari in the Schumacher era. The Cosworth era budgets would be laughable today. Why do you think Williams and McLaren can't compete? Did they suddenly become totally inept?
Generalizing highly complex topics to provide an ecological/geographical determinist view of F1 checkered history perhaps should be avoided because it doesn't adequately explains all facts, and overly simplistic account ultimately results in false understanding of it.
are Williams and McLaren then suddenly inept? I will be beaten up for this, but no, its not suddenly, but most likely yes, they are inept. Williams had Mercedes, McLaren had Mercedes, and compare them to other teams. It's not just power unit which makes them what they became, and answer is complex beyond what I would be able to assess, yet it keeps me suspicious, that both teams lacking top shelve personnel. When Honda left, and McLaren become an emperor without cloths, suddenly we know that they have more problems on the table. Andreas Seidl is pretty smart guy, but I doubt that he will be able to change prevailing corporate culture, and I think he will be lucky if he can escape later with his good name intact.
 
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Grizzly

Bear
Contributor
Maybe he learned from the best? No, sorry, that cant be right because they've never spoken to each other before and they confirmed this is a joint interview where they were talking together about their fond memories of not talking to each other before.:dizzy:
 

F1Brits_90

Race Winner
Verstappen to Mercedes. You heard it denied here first, by denial royalty Mercedes chief, McBain!

McBain! had "quite a laugh" over reports of Verstappen talks

Rainier_Wolfcastle.png
 

F1Brits_90

Race Winner
that is scewed somewhat because all the other have got lucky & been in the best or title challenging car in that time. Schumacher at benetton within 2 yrs
vettel at red bull within 18 months
hamilton straight away.
alonso at Renault in 4 yrs

verstappen hasnt had car to win the title. at any time also 100 races isnt what it was 100 races was probally 7 seasons when schumacher started now it more like 5. soon to be 4 & as ive mentioned few times, a team 4th in constructors back in 90s 00s would win a the odd race in a season on pure pace. now being 4th you have to very lucky & hope chaotic race just to be on podium
 
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