Lewis Hamilton has been told that Max Verstappen’s domination of F1 is a good thing for the sport by IndyCar legend Mario Andretti. The American icon has claimed that when records are being broken, that is when a series is thriving.
With Hamilton and Mercedes struggling to make a dent in Red Bull’s advantage, it is looking likely that the 38-year-old will end his second successive season without a Grand Prix victory to his name.
The seven-time world champion has been extremely vocal about the impact of Red Bull’s domination on the sport, joking earlier this season that Verstappen wasn’t even being challenged on his way to race wins.
Asked whether or not the Dutchman had it easy this season, Hamilton replied with a reference to Austin Powers: “What do you want me to say? I haven’t spoken to him. He is having a smoke and a pancake. You know the film?”
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Hamilton has also suggested that F1 should step in to reduce the extent of the team’s advantage over the rest of the field, claiming that he feels sorry for the fans who have to watch races that are already wrapped up before the lights go out.
According to Andretti, however, this isn’t the case. Speaking to PlanetF1 about the state of F1 right now, he explained: “Did anyone ever think that Michael Schumacher’s win record would be broken, or World Championships – those are very impressive records. But that’s the beauty about this sport, I always say records are made to be broken.
“I’ve held some records in IndyCar for many, many years. All of a sudden, they’re in danger, so the way I look at the sport, I love to see the sport thrive. And the sport thrives when records are broken.
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“That’s the beautiful thing about it. I look at it as a very, very positive thing for individuals like myself that love the sport above anything else.”
Max Verstappen had even less sympathy for his long-time rival when he was asked about Hamilton’s suggestions of a development cut-off date to stop Red Bull and other teams from cementing their advantage for the following year.
Talking ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix, Verstappen responded: “Life is unfair as well. It’s not only in F1. A lot of things in life are unfair so we just have to deal with it.”
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