Sebastian Vettel has made clear his top drivers of this Formula 1 generation are, the four-time World Champion describes Lewis Hamilton as the best there’s ever been and Max Verstappen as great, but also two drivers you cannot compare insists the German.
Since 2010, only four drivers have won F1 world titles: Lewis Hamilton (7), Sebastian Vettel (4) Max Verstappen (soon to be 3) and the solo winner Nico Rosberg. Two remain at the top of the sport, one quit F1 at the end of 2016 and the other walked away last year.
The latter, Vettel now ten months into his retirement opened up on the great GOAT debate, as well as the topic of Hamilton and Verstappen during an interview with Martin Brundle on Sky F1: “The beauty of it is they’re different. You can’t compare Max to Lewis. There’s not one formula, no one recipe for success. Lewis demonstrated he’s the best there’s ever been.”
It’s a big call for Vettel to make, but stats back him up as Hamilton is tied with Michael Schumacher on seven F1 world titles, but has a mammoth 103 Grand Prix wins to his name. The tie-breaker that gives Hamilton the status of GOAT, statistically speaking.
Seb: Max is a great driver who is not distracted
While 38-year-old Hamilton is approaching the dusk of his career, it is still early morning, so to speak, for 25-year-old Verstappen, who some predict could destroy all those incredible records of his rival and set the benchmark even higher than his predecessors.
Vettel, who messaged good luck to Verstappen before he broke the German’s record of nine Grand Prix wins in a row, is full of praise for the Dutch ace: “Max is demonstrating at the moment that he’s pulling off something that’s never been done before. I think Max is a great driver, able to adapt very quickly, able to be very comfortable in the uncomfortable. He’s learnt and understood.
“He will get better in that regard, providing he’s paying attention but I think he is. He’s not distracted, he’s not worrying about which sneakers to put on in the morning and happy to go racing. That’s what he loves,” ventured Vettel on Verstappen’s incredible form, ahead of what could be his 11th GP win in a row, at this Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix.
Stats show that at 25, Verstappen is heading for his third F1 title and 47 GP wins to his name. At the same age, Hamilton had one F1 world title and 14 GP victories while Vettel was a three-time F1 World Champ and a 26-time GP winner.