Max Verstappen revealed he had to reduce his speed with rain forecast towards the end of the 2022 F1 Hungarian GP. The Red Bull driver felt the conditions were tricky with the medium tires had it rained in the last few laps.
Upon being asked by Sportskeeda if the medium tires were a concern with rain forecasted in the closing stages of the race, the Dutchman replied:
“Yeah, they told me on the radio that there might be a bit of rain coming, and then of course, with the tires dropping, and you know, temperatures in general, that always makes it a bit more tricky. And then we got the VSC as well, so you lose even more tire time so that last lap was yeah, it was driven really slowly, just to make sure that you wouldn’t spin.”
Although it did not rain during the 2022 F1 Hungarian GP, Max Verstappen was advised over the team radio to drive carefully in the closing stages of the race. Reluctant to spin in the race once more, the Dutchman had to manage his tires and drive slowly to avoid any last-minute drama.
Max Verstappen prefers the championship battle this year compared to last year
The Dutch champion felt there was a generational gap between him and Lewis Hamilton on and off track last year. Elaborating on his relationship with Charles Leclerc and Ferrari, Max Verstappen revealed he preferred the good battle on the track but also enjoys a healthy relationship with them off-track, compared to the one last year.
Asked by Sky Sports Italia If the generation gap between him and Hamilton influenced the title battle last year, Verstappen said:
“For sure, but I prefer what we have now. Because it’s first of all, Charles I know very well, he’s a nice guy, we are similar age, I think we are only three weeks apart, and I think also we are fighting a very well respected competitor in terms of Ferrari. The way they go about, the way we are fighting like, you know, when they win a race, we can go to them and say ‘well done’, and when we win a race, they can say ‘well done’, and I really respect that.”
Elaborating on his relationship with Ferrari as a team, Max Verstappen further added:
“Also certain people within the team also – even Mattia [Binotto, Ferrari team principal], I have a really good relationship with him. Not only Mattia, even Gino [Rosato, Ferrari F1 multipurpose] running around, we always have a good laugh. Even on Saturday night, we even had a laugh in Paul Ricard you know and I think that’s great. Because that’s what racing should be about. we are hard competitors on the track and we always try to beat each other which I think is normal. But outside of it, you can have a good time as well and that’s what I really enjoy about this year.”
In the 2021 championship, both title protagonists did not share a bond off-track. In 2022, however, both title protagonists have known each other since their junior karting years and grew up racing each other. The difference in the age and generation has been reflected in the healthy title battle this season and the mutual respect shared by both.