Max Verstappen claimed his fifth consecutive win at last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix, extending his lead in the drivers’ championship to 116 points over Charles Leclerc in second place.
That means Verstappen can mathematically clinch his second F1 title at the next race in Singapore if he increases his lead over the Monegasque by a further 17 points.
The Dutchman is also very close to breaking the record for wins in a single season. He has achieved 11 so far this year, numbers that place him two behind the record shared by Sebastian Vettel and Michael Schumacher with six races remaining to finish this course.
The reigning champion spoke publicly about his current emotions and feelings in what is his best F1 win run so far, saying it was “unbelievable what we are experiencing within the team”.
“We’re having an amazing year, and it’s important to enjoy it,” Verstappen said.
“I think we’ve had a lot of different challenges on different types of tracks and now the car really seems to work on all of them. And yes, we’re extremely pleased.”
The ease with which Verstappen has swept his way to the 2022 title contrasts with the victory that gave him his first world title last year, which was decided on the last lap of the last race after an intense battle throughout the season. against Lewis Hamilton.
Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said there was “not an iota” of himself that he wished Ferrari had put up more of a fight, given the pressures they had to endure throughout last season.
Despite some penalties that have made him lose some positions on the starting grids of recent races, the #1 has come back in each and every one of them to keep his winning streak alive and show that Red Bull has taken a big step ahead compared to Ferrari.
The Dutchman explained that his current period of success was similar to his last year in karting, but doing something like that in F1 was “very different in terms of feelings”.
“At that point your goal is to get to Formula 1, so of course you enjoy what you’re achieving, but you also think there’s still a long way to go until you get to F1.
“So the wave of emotions and what you feel is a bit different. But that last year in karting was also very nice,” said the energy drink team driver.
If Verstappen manages to win his second championship in Singapore with five races to go, it would be the earliest win since Michael Schumacher clinched the title with six races to go in 2002, the record to date.