Chances of F1 return permanently drift away for Maldonado


Former Williams and Lotus driver Pastor Maldonado believes his chances of returning to Formula 1 have likely permanently drifted away.

The man who brought Williams its 114th and last Grand Prix win, in Barcelona in 2012, moved into sportscar racing this year after a few sabbatical years, driving for DragonSpeed in the WEC's LMP2 class.

As Spa last weekend, Maldonado said he took advantage of the break in his career to "expand the family", but the 33-year-old Venezuelan also revealed that F1 was now a distant memory.

"I do not have any sponsors or financial support from my country as was the case before," he told Belgian daily La Dernière Heure.

"The situation of my countrymen is difficult, but given the climate in Venezuela, it can only get better," he added.

A controversial figure in Grand Prix racing known for his propensity to crash, Maldonado refuted the claims that Red Bull's Max Verstappen shares similarities with the flamboyant driving style he showed during his years in F1.

"Max is a fantastic driver," said Maldonado. "But he is still very young and so it's normal that he's still making mistakes.

"He needs to accumulate experience, but comparing him with me is inappropriate," he added.

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