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Teenager Verstappen seduced by British fans

2016-07-11 08:15

THE FLYING DUTCHMAN: Max Verstappen continues to light up F1 with his blistering pace. Image: AP / Luca Bruno

England - Dutch teenager Max Verstappen was so impressed by the home fans at the 2016 British Grand Prix that he felt he should change his passport.

The 18-year-old Red Bull driver finished third behind the two Mercedes of victorious defending three-time champion Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

After experiencing the enthusiasm of the 130 000 crowd during the post-race podium ceremonies, he said: "That was just amazing! They are cheering for a non-British driver - I think maybe I need to change my passport."

Most successful Dutch racer in F1 

The record-breaking Verstappen's rapid progress from rookie to front-runner has made him the most successful Formula 1 driver in Dutch motor racing history, surpassing the achievements of his father Jos.

The young Verstappen won on his debut with the Red Bull team, after joining from Toro Rosso, at the Spanish Grand Prix to become the sport's youngest race winner.

READ: British GP - Radio penalty costs Rosberg at Silverstone

On Sunday (July 10, 2016), in changing and treacherous conditions, he fought for second place with championship leader Rosberg before settling for third.

Verstappen said: "It was very exciting, but very tricky in the beginning. I think I stopped one lap too late. I did my own race, but unfortunately Nico got past me - but thank you to Red Bull for this car.

"In the beginning, it was very difficult to see where I was going, but even on slick tyres, the car was doing what it should and we were close to the Mercedes."

Move of the season

His passing move on Rosberg, round the outside at Becketts, was a stunning example of his talent and courage and a candidate for move of the season.

Verstappen added: "I felt the car had a lot of grip there, around the outside, so you can make that move and I think it worked well."

READ: 2016 British GP - As it happened

Later in the race, he was told that Rosberg, who had regained second place, had a gearbox problem.

"I tried to close the gap and get past, but once you get into dirty air it's difficult to get even closer," Verstappen said.

"I have to say a thank you to the team for giving me such a great car for the weekend."


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