Red Bull’s Max Verstappen says he is analysing his own performances “everyday” to understand his flaws and improve his driving – more so than his fitness.
Though a team leader in Red Bull and a superstar of F1, Red Bull’s Verstappen remains a young talent whose skills have yet to be fully refined, and as he enters the 2021 season, the Dutchman says he has spent time analysing his performances daily, focusing on small holes in his technique and working to address them.
Verstappen says he prefers to focus on his driving over his fitness, which is a primary focal point of off-season training for many drivers, including some of Verstappen’s close rivals, like Lewis Hamilton. “I am looking back at races, analysing weekends, etc,” he said to media like F1, Motorsport Network, Racefans and more.
“Sometimes when just looking back at the race already, you can see stuff. It is important to start looking at other teams and hear what they say. I am more about improving driving wise. Not fitness wise. It is never good enough you know. Every year you need to step up again and try to be even better in qualifying or try to be even more consistent in the race.
“I am more about driving and trying to be even better on tyres, etc. This is a natural process and it is not something that I can pinpoint you know. It just happens for me naturally. If it happens you keep rewinding a race week end in your head,” Verstappen summed up.
In 2021, Verstappen will face an intra-team threat unlike any he has faced since 2017, with Sergio Perez entering Red Bull in the new season. The Dutchman says he expects the Mexican to bring the team points as he has done elsewhere in his career, and that his experience can help Red Bull to come up with new ideas.
“Mainly [he can contribute] his information this year as he had done at other teams,” said Verstappen. “[He can] transfer to the teams his knowledge and finding and give to the team a few different ideas about a few things.” With rumors abound that he could be destined for Mercedes in 2022, after Hamilton’s contract expires, the Dutchman said he intends to focus on himself, drowning out the noise and guesswork.
“At the end of the day, I don’t know what Lewis is going to do,” said Verstappen. “But I just focus on myself, and I’m very focused on this year and trying to make it a success. It’s still early in the season, with only basically a shakedown [complete], so those kind of things, I’m not really thinking about at this stage.”
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