Max Verstappen’s father reveals enjoyment at his son lapping arch-rival Lewis Hamilton on his way to winning the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola
- Max Verstappen lapped Lewis Hamilton during the race at the Italian circuit
- Verstappen had said it was ‘not anything exciting’ due to Mercedes’ struggles
- But his father admitted he relished the incident as his son won in style at Imola
- Jos Verstappen said Max had a ‘perfect’ weekend after his victory on Sunday
Max Verstappen’s father Jos has revelled in his son lapping arch-rival Lewis Hamilton during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, claiming he ‘enjoyed’ seeing it ‘after everything that happened last year’.
Reigning world champion Verstappen cruised to victory at Imola on Sunday to close the gap to Ferarri’s Charles Leclerc on the overall standings.
His win included lapping Hamilton, whose struggles with Mercedes continued at the famous Italian circuit and led the British start to concede his championship hopes were over for the year.
Jos Verstappen (left) said he enjoyed his son lapping Lewis Hamilton at Imola on Sunday
Verstappen lapped Hamilton at the start of lap 41 en route to winning the famous race in Italy
The pair went head-to-head for the F1 championship last season, with Red Bull’s Verstappen pipping Hamilton to the title by winning in controversial fashion in the final race of the campaign in Abu Dhabi.
‘Honestly, I did enjoy seeing Max lap Hamilton after everything that happened last year,’ Jos Verstappen wrote in his column on his son’s official website.
‘Hamilton really had a tough time, whereas his team-mate George Russell seemed to be more balanced.
‘It’s not often you have the opportunity to lap a Mercedes.’
Max Verstappen claimed lapping Hamilton, who finished 13th, at the start of lap 41 of the race was not ‘anything exciting’ for him owing to Mercedes’ well-documented issues during the opening phase of the season. ‘It just happens,’ the Dutch star said.
Verstappen’s win saw him move to within 27 points of Charles Leclerc in the race for the title
His father also praised Max’s performance at Imola after his win moved him to 59 points – 27 behind Leclerc in top spot.
Jos described the weekend as ‘excellent’ and ‘perfect’ for his son. ‘I found him incredibly strong,’ he said.
‘He didn’t make a single mistake, was solid and completely in control. Red Bull clearly made a step in the right direction.
‘In Italy, Max and Red Bull put Ferrari under pressure, and when under pressure, it’s easy to make a mistake. If you are effortlessly leading, that chance is a lot smaller. It turned out to be a perfect weekend for Max.’