Verstappen: I won’t change my mind about Netflix Drive to Survive

BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 10: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing looks on in the garage during Day One of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 10, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

It is well known that Formula 1 world champion Max Verstappen refused to cooperate with Netflix’s popular ‘Drive to Survive’ docu-series last year and the Dutchman has not changed his mind for 2022.

Season 4 of the popular series debuts on Friday, 11 March, on the streaming service but the Red Bull driver told reporters during testing in Bahrain that the story remained the same as far as he was concerned.

“I won’t change my mind,” said the 24-year-old. “I think that was already ruined after Season One. I think I’m quite a down to earth guy and I just want it to be facts and don’t hype it up.

“I understand of course it needs to be like that for Netflix and most people like that… it’s just not my thing. I’ll probably watch it and see how nicely over the top it is and then just continue with my life and I’ll probably watch some other documentaries on Netflix.”

Verstappen said last year that he was snubbing the series because it was ‘faked’ and rivalries exaggerated for entertainment.

Drive to Survive has been credited as a big factor in fuelling the sport’s growth, in the United States particularly, by appealing to younger audiences and those new to the sport.

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has taken a starring role after a 2021 season that highlighted his fierce rivalry with Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff.

Verstappen beat Mercedes’ seven times F1 world champion, Lewis Hamilton, to the drivers’ title after a controversial final race in Abu Dhabi.

When the series made its debut, both Mercedes and Ferrari opted not to open their doors to Netflix producers and crews, but the success, particularly in the USA, had them making an about-turn on the matter.

For Season 4, Netflix promises in the intro: “Offering unprecedented access, Season 4 will once again take fans behind the scenes, to witness first-hand how the drivers and teams prepare to battle it out for victory in one of the sport’s most dramatic seasons to date.”

Previous release dates:

  • Drive to Survive Season 1: 8th March 2019, the F1 season began on 17 March;
  • Drive to Survive Season 2: 28th February 2020, season supposed to start 15 March when COVID delayed it until 5th July;
  • Drive to Survive Season 3: 19th March 2021, the F1 season began 28 March. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin)