He is his biggest supporter and fan: Jos Verstappen talks about son Max’s record-breaking season and outlines what we can expect from him in the future
Max Verstappen has outdone himself with the 2023 Formula 1 season. The Red Bull driver crowned his second title defense in a row with numerous records that he and those around him would hardly have dared to dream of when he won his first title in 2021. Not even his father Jos Verstappen
“We didn’t know that back then, of course,” he says on Sky when asked whether he had any idea back in 1997 – when his son was born – that he would one day become one of the greatest racing drivers of all time. “But, it was already my turn to choose a strong name and we agreed to call him Max.”
Max, derived from the Latin Maximus, means “the greatest”. And Verstappen lived up to this name in 2023: 19 wins this season, 21 podiums, 575 points – no Formula 1 driver before him has ever been so dominant over the course of a season.
What else is there to come? How will he top that? “I have no idea,” muses father Jos, himself a former racing driver and his son’s biggest supporter. “I think he’s so strong this year and he’s always, as they say, one hundred percent there every race and that’s the most important thing. “
Max Verstappen and Red Bull, the perfect symbiosis
The three-time world champion is not fazed by problems – such as at the season finale in Abu Dhabi. “It was difficult in the third practice session, but everything was perfect again from qualifying onwards,” says Jos Verstappen.
“That’s also Max’s strength, but also that of his race engineers, who understand what he needs and that’s just great,” he says, praising the cooperation at Red Bull.
Verstappen is still under contract there until the end of 2028. However, this contains an exit clause. Recently, the Dutchman has often criticized Formula 1, criticizing the sprint races and the show aspect of many events, such as the recent one in Las Vegas, which he feels is too much of a show
When asked whether he might lose interest in Formula 1 at some point, his father emphasizes: “He’s certainly not tired.” But he is also aware of the sacrifices and challenges that the increasingly full racing calendar entails.
Jos Verstappen: Max will fulfill his contract
“Now Max is happy that this season is over. But it’s difficult. I mean, you can see it in yourself too, everyone is a bit sick and all that. 24 races is too much for me. But I don’t know when it will be too much for him,” says Jos Verstappen.
But his son still has a few years to go: “Yes yes, one hundred percent. He’ll serve out his contract anyway.” But before the next season calls, it’s time to relax.
“For him, the winter means that we can eat and drink whatever we want and finish with Formula 1. That’s important to recharge the battery,” says dad Verstappen. “He wants to have a proper rest, not talk about Formula 1 at all and then he’ll start training again in mid-January. “