Former F1 manager dismisses claim about Max Verstappen's better equipment

"He does not need better equipment, he wants the same equipment. Talent will do the rest."

by Sead Dedovic
Former F1 manager dismisses claim about Max Verstappen's better equipment
© Mark Thompson / Getty Images Sport

From the moment when Max Verstappen showed his dominance, rumors immediately appeared that the Dutchman was given better equipment than his colleagues. However, after such rumors, many doubt it or firmly believe that it is not true. According to the opinion of many experts, Verstappen is currently the best driver, as his results show. The F1 world is such that it is sometimes difficult to provide every driver with the same conditions for progress. Despite everything, Verstappen is a man who knows how to use the potential of every car and has an incredible ability to adapt. Many have talked about this. 

Former Toro Rosso manager Graham Watson is one of those who has a great opinion of the Dutchman. In an interesting interview, Watson primarily referred to Max's father, Jos, whom he believes was not treated fairly when he was Michael Schumacher's teammate. This could have been a huge motivation for Max to develop his ability to adapt.

“To this day, I don’t think that [Verstappen’s father] Jos got a fair treatment [alongside Michael Schumacher] at Benetton,” Watson said, as quoted by

“And that has partly ensured that Max understands that aspect of the sport very well: he does not need better equipment, he wants the same equipment. Talent will do the rest."

Watson remembered Max's beginnings. You could immediately notice that Max is an incredible talent who was predicted to have a great career. When Verstappen is mentioned, many emphasize his mentality. Only the best can compete with such confidence. In addition to his mentality, his qualities are truly top-notch, and the combination of mentality and quality has influenced Verstappen to become the best driver on the F1 scene. Although he was only 17 years old in his debut season, his maturity impressed Watson and the rest of the team. Competing next to much older colleagues and showing that he can fight with anyone is really impressive when you are 17 years old.

“I noticed that immediately in Max’s first year with Carlos. Knowing them both, I knew Max would be top dog from the moment he got in the car with us.

He didn’t have to play games or be political because he’s just incredibly fast. ‘I will do everything I can to help the team move forward, and you will follow me,’ he basically said with his actions."

They knew that it was inevitable to support such a talent. From the first day of his career, he had enormous support. Max used to thank for such support with his performances.

“And ultimately you want to follow him, because success brings success and people want to follow that. In our team, we supported Max because we wanted him to be successful. We all saw how good he already was.”

Watson compared Verstappen to the best of the F1 scene that we have had the opportunity to watch in the past. When you are compared to drivers like Schumacher or Senna, then you can be sure that you are one of the greatest talents.

“In my opinion, Max is exceptional, like Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher. And when you have someone like that on your team, how can you not support him with everything you have?”

Alex Albon on Max Verstappen's driving style

Albon, in an interview on the High-Performance Podcast, shared insights into his time as Max Verstappen's teammate at Red Bull. He highlighted Verstappen's reputation for shaping the team around him, similar to Michael Schumacher at Ferrari. Albon stressed that while the car is important, Verstappen's exceptional speed comes from his unique and incredibly sharp driving style. It was Albon who was one of the first to deny the rumors that Max Verstappen has a more "advanced" car than his teammates.

Max Verstappen and Alex Albon
Max Verstappen and Alex Albon© Mark Thompson / Getty Images Sport

Albon compared driving alongside Verstappen to playing a computer game with maximum sensitivity, describing the experience as intense and challenging. This analogy helps convey the distinctiveness of Verstappen's driving approach and its impact on the overall team dynamic. 

Albon described how, in his experience, there was a gradual change during the season. At the start, the performance gap between teammates was small. However, as the season went on, Max Verstappen expressed a preference for a sharper front-end in the car, wanting it to be more responsive.

This is another confirmation of his consistency and work on himself. The Dutchman is the type of driver who always strived to improve and always showed more than before. Verstappen is truly an example of a driver that many should be. He is not just a talent, he is a man who strives to learn new things and make progress every day. Even now that he has been the champion three times in a row, his passion and desire to win is always there.

Max Verstappen