Coulthard: Only 'f***ing idiots' say Verstappen owes success to car


David Coulthard says that two-time F1 world champion Max Verstappen is already one of the sport's greats and that only a "fucking idiot" would claim that the Red Bull charger owes his success to his car.

Verstappen wrapped up the 2022 world title in with four races to spare, marking a banner year for the Dutchman that included 15 wins, or the most victories ever achieved by an F1 driver in a single season.

At 25, Verstappen – who started his career in Formula 1 in 2015 with Toro Rosso – should already be considered as one of the sport's all-time greats, according to Coulthard.

"Just as Lewis doesn’t need nine world titles for me to consider him one of the greatest drivers in the sport, Max is already one of the greats," Coulthard told Dutch website

"You would also have to be a fucking idiot to claim that he only achieved this because he was in a good car.

"After all, none of his team-mates have been able to measure up to him. Max is a beast on the track, a winning machine who doesn’t give a shit about what we have to say or what anyone else has to say. He’s unbelievable."

Read also: Verstappen hints at post-F1 career in endurance racing

While Coulthard rightly considers Verstappen as an F1 legend in his own right, the Dutchman has undeniably made the most of the superior equipment supplied to him by Red Bull.

But Coulthard warns that if the Milton Keynes-based outfit fails to supply its star driver a title-winning machine in the future, Verstappen will struggle to boost his title tally.


"The Verstappen era may be over after two titles, not because he’s not a brilliant driver, but he may not have a title-winning car in the coming seasons. Nobody knows that in advance," said the former Grand prix driver.

"Lewis could have been a nine-time instead of a seven-time F1 champion. At the same time, he has often been in a good car, and someone like [Fernando] Alonso has not.

"Alonso should have had more than two titles but his choices and the racing gods have put him in the position where he will drive for Aston Martin next year and the chances of him becoming champion are slim."

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner agrees that his team will need to continue to supply Verstappen with the best car for him to extend his domination in F1.

"I never look too far, but for me, Max is way above the rest in Formula 1," says Horner. "I think he can achieve much more if we give him a car that matches his talents."


According to Horner's sidekick, Red Bull motorsport chief Helmut Marko, Verstappen is not only greatest talent on the grid, he has also emerged as a genuine tyre expert, a quality often attributed to his current teammate Sergio Perez.

"There are only two drivers in Formula 1 who are halfway to the level of Verstappen, they are Charles Leclerc and Hamilton," Marko told Spain's Marca.

"Max drives with more confidence than ever, with more overview, at the same time becoming a tyre expert.

"For example, he races longer on a soft tyre than rivals with a harder compound, I think for him there is no limit.

"He gets in the car and is so confident from the first free practice session, from the first lap that you can see that when it's wet, it's two seconds faster than the rest in the first laps, everyone has to get closer first."

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