Twelve years. This the age difference between Lewis Hamiton (born in 1985) and Max Verstappen (born on 30 September 1997). The roads of the seven-time world champion and the young Red Bull champion met definitively in this 2021 in which for the first time Verstappen had at his disposal a sufficiently competitive means to compete with the reigning champion for the conquest of the world title. It was since 2012 that two drivers from two different teams did not compete for the title until the end of the season. Back then the challenge was a rematch between Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) and Fernando Alonso (Ferrari), with the former able to repeat the success of 2010 again against the Asturian.
Hamilton and Verstappen crossed paths in practically all races, coming into contact on two occasions at Monza and Silverstone. On many other occasions he only touched contact, in Barcelona and Interlagos due to Hamilton’s ‘reflexes’, ready to correct his trajectory to avoid the impact with Verstappen. The British driver stressed that it is not the first time he has found himself engaged in a fight with a rider as ready to take any risk in a brawl like Verstappen. who always seems willing to accept the fact of ‘do not take prisoners‘taking into account a possible collision: “He is not the only rider I have competed against who is like that. Everyone has a different way of behaving. And it’s interesting “Lewis Hamilton said in an interview with the newspaper The-Race.com.
From the height of his competitive experience and with the ‘wings’ approaching Hamilton underlined the fact that he had tried to ‘profile’ as much as possible the rival in this world championship run, recognizing himself in some nuances and attitudes that Hamilton himself also had at the age of Verstappen: “Now that I’m older I look deeper at my opponents retracing their origins, the environment in which they grew up and the training courses that forged them. I know what it’s like for Verstappen to have the spotlight on him and the pressures that are inevitable at that age. I know he’s super fast and will get stronger and stronger as he matures. If I look back on my 24-25 years I think back to how many mistakes I made. I had the speed, but I was inevitably going through a whole range of experiences off the track and I felt the pressure of being constantly in the spotlight and the pressure of always having to be on top. I don’t think I have achieved much in that moment of my career ”.
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