“I remember what it was like when I had my first”– Lewis Hamilton claims Max Verstappen would have an impact from first title pressure.
Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen are vying for the 2021 world championship. The Dutchman is currently leading the standings against the seven-time world champion by five points.
— Red Bull Racing Honda (@redbullracing) September 23, 2021
While the competition is still open, Hamilton claims that the pressure of the first championship would be impacting Verstappen, even if he isn’t showing.
“Obviously he won’t admit to it, and I’m not going to make an assumption, but I remember what it was like when I had my first [title fight] and it definitely mounted up,” said the Briton.
“It was difficult. It was intense. I was going through a lot of different emotions, and I didn’t always handle it the best. And that’s to be expected.”
“There’s a lot of pressure: you’re working in a big team. There’s a lot of self expectation and pressure because the desire to win is huge. So I empathise and understand that. But I know that we will continue to grow from this.”
Experience matters in wheel-to-wheel battles
Hamilton, then reflecting on the Monza collision, talks about the importance of experience in handling such wheel-to-wheel battles, especially when deciding whether to continue the fight going into the corner.
“We all have to be smart and know that there is a time where you’re not going to make a corner, and it’s all about making sure you live to fight the next corner,” he said.
“And it’s really kind of just through experience you find that balance, and you know that it’s not all won on one corner. As I said, I know what it’s like having your first fight for your first championship, and your eagerness.”
“And you go through lots of different experiences and emotions during that time.”