‘He’s only getting started,’ Nico Rosberg feels Max Verstappen will be ‘one of the best’ drivers of all time
Max Verstappen (IMAGO / PanoramiC)
It’s been a momentous year for Max Verstappen. While it started poorly for him with two retirements in the first two races, he has dominated the championship from Imola onwards, and broken the record for the most wins in a season – he now stands alone with 15, taking over from Michael Schumacher (2004) and Sebastian Vettel’s (2013) 13 victories in a season.
His exploits this season mean that he is now a two-time world champion, with 35 victories to his name – which is already three more than Fernando Alonso, who is considered one of the greatest drivers of all time. Even if the career circumstances are different, it is an extremely impressive output, and the Dutchman is still only 25 years old. Nico Rosberg thinks Verstappen will join the ranks of the greatest drivers.
Speaking on Sky Sports F1‘s Any Driven Monday, the 2016 world champion said as per CRASH: “He is an incredible driver. I think it’s easy to say even now that he’s going to be one of the best of all time, if you look at the statistics he actually even is now. He’s a double world champion with all of the race wins that he has, more than [Fernando] Alonso.”
Rosberg feels Verstappen will ‘confirm’ his status as one of the greatest ever in ‘the next decade’: “He’s already one of the best of all time and I think, he’s only getting started. He’s going to confirm that in the next decade, certainly. His level of driving is phenomenal and it’s great to witness that.”
Nico Rosberg: Max Verstappen’s 2022 ‘one of the greatest driving seasons’
Red Bull hasn’t always been clearly the faster car. Before the summer break, Ferrari gave them stiff competition, but still Verstappen came out on top – even if he was helped by Ferrari’s own mistakes. He barely put a foot wrong, and like Christian Horner, Nico Rosberg also thinks that this season was one of the ‘greatest driving seasons’. He said:
“We need to remember also, it’s not like from the get-go this year his car was miles quicker than everyone else’s. The Ferrari was the quickest car in the beginning of the season and still, he got this incredible 15 wins and really destroyed the opposition in that way. If you look at the points, he scored 146 more than anybody else, it’s unreal. It’s one of the greatest driving seasons we’ve ever seen certainly.”
Till Red Bull keep giving him a competitive car, Verstappen will keep winning, even if he won’t dominate. He is still only 25 and is contracted till at least 2028, so he has ample amounts of time to write further pages in the history books.