Max Verstappen would have ‘punched’ Lewis Hamilton in the face if title rivals’ grizzly crash at the Italian GP happened ‘two years ago’, former driver Timo Glock says… as Red Bull ace is hailed for his ‘huge leap’
- Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton are tussling in the F1 drivers’ championship
- Red Bull ace Verstappen currently leads his Mercedes title rival by just six points
- Both racers crashed at the Italian GP, with Verstappen’s car mounting Hamilton’s
- Former driver Timo Glock says Verstappen would have lashed out two years ago
Max Verstappen would have ‘punched’ Lewis Hamilton if their series of dramatic crashes had happened a couple of years earlier, former F1 driver Timo Glock says.
The two drivers’ championship title contenders have been embroiled in a thrilling bid to take the crown, although their rivalry has boiled over on a number of occasions.
Both endured a crash at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone earlier this year, and collided in Italy just a few races later, leaving the superstars furious at each other.
Timo Glock says Max Verstappen may have ‘punched’ Lewis Hamilton in crashes two years ago
But former Toyota man Glock feels that Verstappen has demonstrated an increased level of maturity this season, and described the change as a ‘huge leap’.
‘Lewis never shows on the outside that he has pressure,’ Glock told Sport1.
‘He knows very well how to come across as calm.
Verstappen and Hamilton’s title race has boiled over into a couple of grizzly incidents this year
Hamilton and his Mercedes collided nastily with Verstappen’s Red Bull at the Italian Grand Prix
‘Of course, he also knows that when he puts on his helmet, it all depends.
‘But he has found a way to appear relaxed and cool. Max has also managed that well so far.
‘For me, he has made a huge leap, he has become much more relaxed, much more controlled in many ways.
‘Two years ago, in a situation like the crash in Monza, he probably would have opened Lewis’ helmet and punched him.
Both drivers also endured an altercation at Silverstone, with Verstappen then crashing out
After the collision, Hamilton went on to win his home race and celebrated wildly on the podium
‘Now he leaves him on the left and thinks to himself: “See how you get out of this”.’
Hamilton was hit with a 10-second penalty for sparking the first crash at his home race, while Verstappen was given a three-place grid penalty for the Monza smash.
At the top of the standings, Red Bull ace Verstappen leads the way by six points heading into the weekend’s US Grand Prix, with Mercedes’ Hamilton in hot pursuit.
Meanwhile, Verstappen will be named the most popular F1 driver in the world today.
Verstappen (left) will named as the most popular driver in the world over Hamilton (right) today
Verstappen, 24, is set to be unveiled as the public’s favourite as part of the official Global F1 Fan Survey – with McLaren driver Lando Norris in second spot.
Sportsmail understands that this means Hamilton finished unexpectedly in third.
‘It is quite surprising given Lewis’s seven titles and the fact Verstappen has never won a title and Norris has not even won a race,’ an insider has said.
F1 bosses are calling the research, which was commissioned by Formula One, the largest sports survey ever conducted.