F1: Verstappen and Hamilton verbally spar
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Max Verstappen has admitted he looks at the Drivers’ Championship standings relatively often as he fights with Lewis Hamilton for the F1 title this season. The Red Bull driver is desperate to beat the Mercedes man and end his run of dominance in the sport.
Verstappen had led the championship for much of the season until last time out when Hamilton leapfrogged him with a second place in Hungary.
That was after the Dutchman crashed out in the British Grand Prix thanks to a collision with the world champion.
Verstappen insists he won’t change his driving style after the incident but is well aware of the standings.
“Maybe once every 10 days,” he told The Race. “That’s probably no different now.
“I wasn’t extra cautious or more aggressive. I was just being myself and how I approached my racing already for a long time.
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“So that points lead doesn’t really do anything.”
Being a title contender has changed little about his approach or the way he looks at racing in F1.
And Verstappen is actually more relaxed as he is fighting at the front of the field for glory.
If anything, he says, “I feel more relaxed”.
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“It feels better to be honest. It’s nice, knowing that you have the car and that I have to do the job.
“But for me that doesn’t give me any more pressure because that’s what I have to do anyway.
“That’s what I always wanted to do. Otherwise, it’s better to stop, right? If you don’t feel comfortable with trying to perform.
“So, I’m enjoying it a lot. And when you’re at home, you don’t need to think about it.
“I don’t get carried away. I’m just very focused on every single race weekend.
“It’s a lot better going to race weekend knowing that there is a big chance of fighting for a win compared to just occasionally having a shot at it. So, I feel a lot better.”
F1 is currently on its summer break but returns with the Belgian Grand Prix on Sunday, August 29.
Verstappen currently trails Hamilton by eight points as we approach the halfway mark of the season.
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