From Dutch Grand Prix to the future of Valtteri Bottas and Kimi Raikkonen: it is a Mika Hakkinen at 360 degrees what was expressed at the end of the weekend in Zandvoort, where Max Verstappen triumphed in the home race, also taking the lead in the world championship. The former McLaren driver analyzed the success of Mad Max, underlining the atmosphere of authentic celebration that accompanied the local idol up to the checkered flag.
However, the bi-world champion also wanted to dwell on the news concerning his compatriots Bottas and Raikkonen, commenting on the future that awaits both Finnish drivers: “Valtteri proved to be a first class companion for Lewis – explained the Finnish Flying to unibet.co.uk – with 9 wins, 17 pole positions and 63 podiums, he was a great help to Mercedes. Thanks to him, the team has won the constructors ‘championship every year: being Lewis’ partner is not easy, but Valtteri has given everything, bringing apositive atmosphere in the team without ever giving up. At Alfa Romeo he will be able to use his experience to help the team grow. Vasseur has high expectations for the future, and Valtteri is the perfect person for this goal ”.
The Swiss team will therefore have the opportunity to continue their tradition of Finnish drivers after Raikkonen, who at the end of the season will leave Formula 1 after a long career in the top flight: “It was a pity that Kimi was unable to race on the weekend he announced his retirement – analyzed Hakkinen – in addition to the title won he did great things in the circus, and the fans he has around the world prove it. He has managed to play the superstar role for a full two decades, and with his departure only Lewis, Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel will be left to compete with the world champion title in his pocket. If Mercedes fails to relaunch – he added – Verstappen could soon be added to this list ”.
Speaking of the Dutchman, the 1998 and 1999 world champion finally analyzed the victory of the driver of the Red Bull, describing the authentic context of Zandvoort: “It was great to be present at a race where we saw all the support for Max – has explained – it is truly amazing to see so many people enjoying themselves. He reciprocated all the affection by dominating the entire weekend, from pole to victory, even reaching the momentary first place in the world championship standings. I heard that in the Netherlands 90% of TV ratings were tuned to the race, and this testifies to how much Max has managed to increase the passion for this sport with incredible numbers. To date, it is clear that Red Bull-Honda has the best-performing package in the championship: Zandvoort has demonstrated all this, after two rounds at Silverstone and Spa that weren’t particularly lucky. Among other things, Verstappen has the right qualities to win the world championship: He was under enormous pressure all weekend, but he was always very calm. An incredible look, considering that he is only 23 years old. Mercedes did everything to be able to finish in front of him, even trying an undercut with Lewis in hopes of overcoming him. However, the stop turned out to be a bit slow, unlike Max who was always very fast. The only aspect on which Mercedes was superior – he concluded – was the cooperation between companions: Perez it must be more helpful for Verstappen, especially in such a close fight for the world championship ”.
The last comment Hakkinen reserved for the circuit of Zandvoort, on which the Finn expressed a far from negative opinion: “The organizers – He admitted – they did a great job of getting F1 back here. It is a short track, but at the same time very demanding. There is no occasion to get distracted in the slightest, and it was appreciated by the drivers. Overtaking is difficult, but the maneuver carried out by Perez has shown that they are still possible and feasible. I am sure that F1 and the FIA will analyze the data available to add new DRS points starting from the next edition ”.
FP | Alessandro Prada
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED