(GMM) Jos Verstappen has denied suggestions he “abused” his son Max on the two-time champion’s road to Formula 1.
An official documentary about 25-year-old Verstappen’s rise to F1 is just now being released, with the Red Bull driver saying “very close family members” were involved in the project.
“I’m normally not a guy who really likes to open up about these kinds of things, but I think it does give you a bit more of an insight into how everyone lived through that period,” he said.
According to the Swedish newspaper Expressen, one part of the series deals with constant rumors that the way former F1 driver Jos Verstappen raised his son bordered on “abuse”.
“There are people who say I’m a bad father because I abused my child,” Jos is quoted as saying. “I never abused him!
“I raised him, I was hard on him. That was my plan,” the 51-year-old added.
“Many people cannot imagine what it takes to reach the absolute top level of a sport,” Verstappen snr added.
Franz Tost, the boss at Red Bull’s second F1 team, Alpha Tauri, agrees with Verstappen that Max’s formative years were a “sensational education”.
“That started with his parents, who both raced and put Max into karts at an early age,” he told Sport1.
“His father Jos prepared every detail for Max, but Max then had to implement it. He has everything a champion needs now,” Tost added.
“Just like Fangio, Senna, Prost, Schumacher, Vettel or Hamilton, they are all made the same way – in addition to super talent, they have a total focus on their sport and the selfishness to assert themselves.
“This also includes annoying your team,” he smiled. “You can forget about a driver who never complains.”