Lewis Hamilton has praised Max Verstappen but warned that he has no intention of letting the youngster reaching the top step of the podium consistently.
The Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport driver doesn’t question the Dutchman’s talents and admits that Verstappen is further ahead than every other driver on the grid was at this age.
Verstappen is the youngest driver to start a race at only 17 years old and youngest to win a grand prix at 18.
The Dutchman has a very bright future with many expecting him to win a World Championship but can he match the record of Hamilton himself?
“I think it is very difficult to say, he definitely has the potential to be a world champion as we’ve all seen that and that is why he has such a great following.” said Hamilton to ESPN. “We’ve seen the way he drives and he has great potential and is in a great team.
“He has a long time ahead of him even with a good few seasons under his belt. I still hadn’t even had my first season at 21 so he is even further ahead than me and a lot of drivers.”
Hamilton is looking forward to battling the youngster this season and has no intention of giving Verstappen an easy ride.
“While I’m here I am going to be doing what I can to stop him winning.
“People won’t particularly love that but that is what we are here to do, we are here to battle and I am looking forward to having some really positive battles with him – hopefully this year.”