SportF1Horner praises Verstappen for his 2022 F1 year

Horner praises Verstappen for his 2022 F1 year

Last weekend Verstappen claimed the 2022 title with a commanding win, at Suzuka , with four races still to go.

There was some confusion after the checkered flag as to whether or not all the points would be awarded despite the shortened race distance, but unlike the end of the 2021 Abu Dhabi GP, the success was not marred by controversy.

It was the sixth drivers’ title for the energy drinks team after Sebastian Vettel won four consecutive world championships between 2010 and 2013.

“To do it with four races to go is really a very remarkable performance,” Horner said when asked by if he could enjoy this championship more than 2021.

“And I think Max has been on another planet this year, he has dominated this championship, he has driven with a lot of maturity, a lot of conviction.

“And I think of course it’s much less controversial than the last race in Abu Dhabi, which was a titanic battle last year. Now the big task ahead for us is the constructors’ championship.”

“After eight years, no other team has come close to winning it, and hopefully we can bring it home in 2022 as well.”

Horner acknowledged the different circumstances compared to last year.

“Winning a championship is winning a championship,” he said. “And in this case, I think the blood pressure is much lower than in Abu Dhabi. But it means the same thing.”

“And for Max, becoming world champion last year, having that number one on the car… he’s driven with a lot of conviction this year, and he’s defended the title in a dominant way. It’s been a joy to see him reach another level this year.” grade”.

Race winner and 2022 F1 World Drivers Champion Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing

Horner agreed that drivers often have less pressure after winning their first title, allowing them to go one step further.

“I think last year it was a heavyweight matchup between two titans,” he said.

“And I think getting that championship last year, like it happened with Sebastian and has happened again with Max, has taken the pressure of expectations off of him, and this year he’s gone out there and shattered it.”

“He’s in the best shape of his life, he’s driving incredibly well, the team is working at an exceptionally high level, the strength and depth that we have across the organization is immense.”

“And we are very proud of him. And obviously, we are going to enjoy this moment. But we have to focus quickly on the constructors. And on Checo Pérez securing that second place in the championship.”

Victory at Suzuka was not easy, as Verstappen almost lost position to Charles Leclerc at the first corner, and he had to take his chances.

“We had a horrible start, he had a lot of wheelspin,” Horner said. “But then he went down the old go-kart line, on the outside. And he went full throttle.”

“I talked to him at the red flag break and he said, ‘Look, I was going for it.’ Charles gave him enough space and he took advantage of it. And yeah, those first two corners were great.”

Despite the apparent ease with which he opened up a lead, it was not an easy afternoon for Max Verstappen or Red Bull.

“During a race a lot happens,” Horner said. “I mean, the circuit started to dry out. And these tires don’t like energy, especially in the first sector, you can do a lot of damage to them, and Max just controlled that slip, controlled the temperature, took care of those tires, and in the end He had a lot of rubber left.”

“We thought we were going to be one point short of being champions. So we toyed with the idea of pitting [to get the fastest lap], but it wasn’t certain whether Checo would pass Charles or not. But look, Max Verstappen has been exceptional this year.

“After a couple of tough races earlier in the season, the way the team has recovered, the way he has driven… he has dominated this championship. And again, he has had a totally dominant drive this Sunday. “.

“How did he do it? He took 25 seconds out of Charles in 20 laps, an extraordinary performance. And in the end Checo was also second.”

“It’s fantastic for him and for his position in the championship, for the constructors’ championship, it’s important points too. So I’m absolutely delighted with the result, and I think Max is a really deserved champion.”

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