It’s fair to say Max Verstappen would not be the F1 mega-star he is today without the influence of his dad, Jos.
Verstappen senior, a former F1 racer himself, was heavily involved as his talented son made rapid progress through the junior motorsport categories.
Jos was a mentor, mechanic and taxi driver all in one for his son, who received some tough love in return. One famous story from his childhood saw Jos briefly leave a young Max at a petrol station in Italy to test his commitment after he had made a mistake during a karting race.
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However, Jos’s sacrifices proved worth it in the end with Max soring to F1 and then conquering it with back-to-back world titles. Max himself has said he wouldn’t change a thing about his upbringing, although he would do things differently if he has children of his own one day.
His long-term girlfriend, Brazilian model Kelly Piquet, has a son from a previous relationship with former Red Bull driver Daniil Kvyat.
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“I definitely want kids and if they want to race, that's fine. I do think I would do it differently than how my father and I handled it,” he said in a recent interview with Dutch newspaper De Limburger.
“I don't see that happening at the moment. But for me, it's easy to talk because I don't have children. Maybe I think very differently when the time comes. But, the passion he had went very far. He did everything for me. Tuning engines, preparing karts. I don't see myself doing that.
“At least I'm not going to push my kids to race. They have to want it themselves. And if you still go for it with your son or daughter, then you can no longer drive in Formula 1 yourself, I think. You have to start laying the foundation from the age of four. I want to be there myself.”
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