"I thought it was too early": David Coulthard on Max Verstappen's Turn 5 lunge in F1 2021 season finale

F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi - Max Verstappen chases down Lewis Hamilton
F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi - Max Verstappen chases down Lewis Hamilton

Max Verstappen got by Lewis Hamilton with a late lunge in Turn 5 to seal up the 2021 F1 title on the final lap of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. During an interview with the sport's latest champion, host and former Red Bull Racing driver David Coulthard admitted that he feared the move was ill-timed at first.

About how he felt that Max should have perhaps waited until the exit of Turn 5 instead, Coulthard said:

"As a commentator, watching it, when you went for it at Turn 5 before the entry, I thought it was too early to do it before Turn 5 and better would be the exit. Everyone thought you were going too early."

However, the F1 veteran then praised Max Verstappen, claiming the Dutchman's judgment to be far superior to his own, even during his prime. He said:

"And this confirms how efficient I was as a racing driver versus how you are as a racing driver. You see a gap and you go. I thought it was too early to do it before Turn 5."

Max Verstappen felt Turn 5 overtake was his best shot at winning 2021 F1 title

Despite David Coulthard feeling that the move on Lewis Hamilton was perhaps made too early, Max Verstappen believes it was his best shot at gaining control of the race and preventing his title rival from regaining the lead.

The Dutchman knew he had better pace due to his fresher tires at the end of the race. He said:

"I knew I had better top speed, so as soon as I am ahead, I can control the defense. When you're behind, they can always close the door and you aren't fully in control. So I felt like I need to send it [in] there and then I am in control."

Max Verstappen is all set to return to the grid in 2022, sporting No. 1 on his Red Bull instead of No. 33, being the defending world champion.

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Edited by Sandeep Banerjee