Christian Horner has accused Lewis Hamilton of making subtle provocations to Max Verstappen in the title fight, but that the Red Bull driver doesn’t care. The war of words between the two teams vying for the title has escalated over the past few weeks, not just between the two bosses - and Alain Prost recently said disagreements between Horner and Wolff have gone too far.
But the Red Bull boss believes the seven-time world champion is trying to get his title rival out of step with what he says in the media but assures that the Dutch driver does not fall prey to such provocations. "Lewis is constantly 'throwing' his subtle remarks or provocations.
But the great thing about Max is he doesn't care about that, "Horner told the Telegraph. "He is what he is. He drives a car fast, and then he wants to go home and play on his PlayStation. It's so simple, "he added.
Verstappen has an eight-point advantage over Hamilton with whom he enters the last two races of the season: the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and Abu Dhabi, which is lowering the curtain for this season. This weekend, cars will roar through Jeddah, a track on which the premier class has never raced before.
But despite that, the head of the Austrian team compared the mentality of the Dutchman with another athlete. "Max drives like Tyson Fury fights," Horner added. "He has the same heart. You just know that he will give everything and if you tear him down, he will come back.
" "He has that burning desire, that complete devotion. "I bet Max's first flying lap in Saudi Arabia will be the fastest," he said. In addition to three dropouts and a run to 9th place with a damaged car at the Hungaroring, Verstappen finished among the top two in every other race so far, showing consistency in his first fight for the Formula 1 title.
Horner thinks this will continue in the last two races as he thinks Verstappen feels relaxed. "The maturity Max has shown throughout the season has been extremely impressive," Horner wrote in a column on the Red Bull website.
"He's relaxed and he's incredibly coping with the pressure, I think he's driving better than ever." “A good example of this was during the race in Qatar, when he thought we couldn’t catch Lewis, but commented on the radio that he wanted to have some fun,” he adds.
“Max just talks, and he calls it what he sees. He doesn't work with a sports psychologist: he just deals with it. "