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The record Max Verstappen broke this season shadows Hamilton

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Max Verstappen
Max Verstappen set record at the Mexico City GP. Photo/ WION.
  • Verstappen and his Red Bull team broke Michael Schumacher’s previous record
  • This was with their 14th victory of the year
  • It marked a new turning point in Formula 1 history

Although Max Verstappen claims he has no interest in statistics, he is knowledgeable enough to appreciate the significance of his win at the Mexico City Grand Prix on Sunday.

Verstappen and his Red Bull team broke Michael Schumacher‘s previous record for victories in a season set with Ferrari in 2004. This was with their 14th victory of the year, marking a new turning point in Formula 1 history.

Sebastian Vettel, Verstappen’s predecessor at Red Bull, matched his hero’s accomplishment in 2013 after nine years. And now, nine more years later, Verstappen himself has broken the record and is nearly certain to set a new one in the season’s final two races.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Verstappen says that 2022 is a good season for Red Bull. He adds that he never expected to win the race in the beginning. Now, winning 14 races this season is such a big deal for him.

WHAT VICTORY MEANS TO MAX VERSTAPPEN

Without looking at the stats, he loves his life in F1 because it has taught him the value of outdoing himself every weekend.

“I was never really interested in stats. I just live in the moment. I just try to do the best I can every weekend, win the races. That for me is the most important – that I go home and can say I maximised everything,” he says.

Max Verstappen second win

Max Verstappen second win. Photo by The SportsRush

“But a lot of F1 depends on your package and I am just enjoying the moment. It is an amazing season and I am very happy with winning so many races.”

He also outdid Lewis Hamilton’s mark from 2019 for the most points in a single season. Verstappen says that it’s all about trying to win the championship, and it doesn’t matter how many points he gets.

All he cares about is the statement on all this that it is a tremendous year to get the best. Verstappen’s accomplishment should be seen from the perspective of Red Bull’s ending of Mercedes’ record-setting eight consecutive constructors’ championships.

BREAKING RECORDS

This is the most dominant run in F1 ever. However, Hamilton’s finest year was 11 victories when Mercedes was sweeping everything in their path.

Verstappen has played down his accomplishment, claiming that the F1 seasons are now longer than they were. Schumacher was indeed more prosperous in percentage terms when compared to both Hamilton and Verstappen.

Christian Horner, team manager for Red Bull, said that the victory this year is something extremely unique. He wondered why Verstappen’s accomplishments didn’t get the credit they deserved.

Within 20 races, he has won the most Grands Prix and two sprint races, and he has not always started from the pole. Horner adds that many of those successes required him to compete and battle for them.

Verstappen to him is a driver who is unquestionably at the top of his game and had a great year. His consistency in victory is amazing; many thanks to his amazing car.

Besides, this year’s new rules were put into place with the intention of bringing the industry together. Red Bull, however, fell prey to breaching budget cap, which reportedly gave his team an upper hand in winning the season’s championship title.

DID REDBULL’S BUDGET CAP BREACH GIVE THEM AN UPPERHAND?

Christian Horner

Christian Horner. Photo/PlanetF1

A significant portion of the budget cap breach is attributed to what appears to have been a clerical error. It involved tax credits for research and development expenditures.

The fact that they exceeded the budget cap by £1.86 million while developing this car last year casts doubt on the ingenuity of his victory. The team, however, has been summed up by the season and the race in which Verstappen set this record, in the year in which they lost the founder and man for whom they were made, Dietrich Mateschitz.

In his own words, Horner says they stretch to the limits because racing is what they do. Further, that they race aggressively and pursue their enthusiasm for going out there and giving it their all.

The strategy has some risk, but moderate and soft, he says, adding they could have run out of tyres, but they stuck to Dietrich’s rule of thumb of “no danger, no fun.”

Verstappen won the race by adopting a riskier tyre strategy and making it work, as Horner puts it.

Teresa is a journalist with years of experience in creating web content. She is a wanderlust at heart, but an outgoing sports writer with focus on tennis, athletics, football, motorsports and NBA.

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