Max Verstappen can become the youngest F1 champion in history if he wins the world title this year.
Max Verstappen is up to the challenge of battling Lewis Hamilton for his first F1 championship in 2020, according to former Red Bull reserve driver Robert Doornbos. Verstappen has long been touted for a bright future in Formula One ever since joining the Red Bull Junior Team in 2014.
He was soon confirmed as one of Toro Rosso’s drivers for the 2015 season and he became the youngest driver to start an F1 Grand Prix at the age of just 17 years, 166 days.
The Dutchman has grown from strength to strength since his debut, taking a seat with Red Bull in 2016 and going on to win multiple races.
But his rise has also coincided with an era of dominance from Mercedes with Lewis Hamilton the man to beat on the track.
Red Bull have struggled to build a car capable of challenging, but Verstappen has proven to be box office on the track with a huge fan following already established.
Doornbos has even likened the 22-year-old to football’s Lionel Messi for his pure skillset.
There is optimism heading into the 2020 season that Verstappen can mount a serious challenge for the title and Doornbos suggests this could be the year Verstappen dethrones Hamilton.
“I think if they continue like this in 2020, Red Bull will be hard to beat. Verstappen, too, is also up to the task,” he told Gassan magazine.
“Max is the Messi of motorsport.
“Only once in a decade does a talent like him come along.
“Someone who can achieve so much at such a young age is unique.
“If you think something is impossible, Max does it anyway.
“He has proven that he can rise above the level of his equipment.
“But if the power is not there compared to Ferrari or Mercedes, it will be difficult.”
Red Bull are set to unveil their new RB16 for the 2020 season tomorrow and Verstappen will get to get behind the wheel of the car for the first time in pre-season testing which starts next week.