Verstappen, Perez’s fathers weigh into saga
"Checo wins the races that Max cannot win"
Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez’s respective fathers have weighed into the post-Brazilian GP saga.
A week on from Verstappen’s ignored team order in Brazil, rumours suggest some teams may push the FIA to investigate claims it was payback for Perez supposedly deliberately crashing in Monaco qualifying.
However, there appears to be no such appetite for more controversy of that nature.
"As Mattia (Binotto) and Zak (Brown) said, we’ve had enough PR crises in the last couple of weeks around that team and I think we don’t need another one," said Mercedes boss Toto Wolff.
So just as the saga appeared to be dwindling, Perez’s father Antonio told the Mexican newspaper Esto that Verstappen is feeling "Checo’s hot breath on his neck".
"Max has never had such a good teammate as Checo," he added. "The rest were all subordinate.
"Checo wins the races that Max cannot win - the very difficult ones," he smiled.
Perez snr also thinks the media’s reaction to the ignored team order shows that his son is highly regarded in Formula 1.
"It was wonderful that Checo was defended," he said. "That was perhaps the greatest satisfaction."
Les thrilled with the entire Red Bull team order saga is Verstappen’s father - former F1 driver Jos.
"No I didn’t enjoy it and I worked on it all week," Verstappen senior told De Limburger newspaper.
"Max was portrayed as the bogeyman, which is totally unjustified it. I doubted whether I would come to this race, but I got on the plane anyway.
"But you’re not just going to ask me about Brazil all the time, right?"
Jos Verstappen hinted, however, that Max’s refusal to let his Red Bull teammate past in Brazil may well have been linked with "what happened" in Monaco.
"After the first three races I thought it wasn’t going to work out," he said. "The team then responded quickly and well.
"The problem was mainly the overweight car, but once that was resolved, the car was to Max’s liking. And Monaco, with what happened there, triggered him so much that he thought ’now it’s done’."
Jos insists that his son does not deserve his reputation as a moody wild man.
"Max is basically a very nice and sweet guy. Much more in control," he said.
"I used to be much more extreme, but Max really has a heart. Then when the helmet goes on, he’s a lion. Don’t push Max into a corner or he’ll explode."