Photo: Daimler Media
Seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton would not participate in ‘childish games’, but according to former F1 driver Damon Hill, the opposite is true. He tries to destabilize Verstappen with ‘mental games’, but that does not seem to work well so far.
For the first time in years, Lewis Hamilton has a fearsome opponent in the battle for the world title and then you have to pull out all the stops in all areas. Just like that last time in 2016, when his own teammate Nico Rosberg was an opponent to be feared and took the world title from Hamilton, mental games are played.
You noticed it in the run-up to the Monaco GP. Hamilton made it clear that Max Verstappen’s aggressive driving style during the fights with him could probably be attributed to the fact that Verstappen “had something to prove”. Verstappen remained calm, said he had nothing to prove and, after his victory in Monaco, handed a mental blow back to Hamilton: “Actions say more than words”.
Or how there is also a battle for the world title off the track, because taking another rider out of his comfort zone mentally affects his lap times and performance. However, according to former F1 driver Damon Hill, Max Verstappen plays the game well, something the Dutchman would have had many more problems with years ago.
“Max tries to focus on himself and doesn’t let anything distract him,” the 1996 World Champion told the latest ‘F1 Nation’ podcast.
“I think he focuses well, after all, you can quickly be distracted by journalists who ask whether or not you are upset by insinuations that someone else has made in statements he made.”
“He does not participate in that and is doing very well. It might be a bit boring at times. You then think of ‘tease something along’ but things like that escalate and get out of hand. ”
According to Damon Hill, Lewis Hamilton does play mental games, even though the seven-time world champion all too often claims that he does not participate in such things.
“Lewis says he doesn’t, but occasionally he does,” with Hill referring not only to Hamilton’s recent statements but also to the past.
“Remember with Nico Rosberg. He was telling that he was from a poor neighborhood and from a poor background, unlike a rich kid who grew up in Monaco. Who do you think that was aimed at? ”
Indeed, races and world titles are won not only on the track but also in addition and in the head …
More F1 News: