Max Verstappen feels it would be in the best interest of the sport if there's competition at the front and teams are closer to each other in terms of performance.
F1 witnessed one of the better seasons recently when Verstappen went up against Lewis Hamilton in 2021. The season saw a surge in numbers primarily because the two drivers were in equally competitive cars and performed at a very high level.
Talking about what could be expected this season, Verstappen said that he's looking forward to a closer battle after a dominating 2022 campaign:
"I think in the interests of the sport, you always want the teams to be super-close. But I do think it was already quite close last year. I think as a team we also really executed a lot of things better than the other teams and that's why I guess the points gap was also so big.
I never really felt, apart from two or three races, we absolutely dominated the whole weekend. But for the sport, everybody wants to have a title battle with multiple teams involved."
Verstappen won the 2022 title with four races to go.
Max Verstappen unconcerned about what happens at other teams
Teams like Ferrari and McLaren have seen a change in leadership at the top. Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto has been replaced by Fred Vasseur, while Andreas Seidl has left McLaren for Alfa Romeo.
When asked about his views on this team principal movement at rival teams, Verstappen sounded unconcerned:
"I never really think about being the favourite because you have to keep on working, you have to keep on improving because if you're not they will catch up and overtake you. About people leaving other teams, I don't know.
It's difficult to say from the outside if it's a good thing or a bad thing, is it going to interrupt their work? If new people come in, it always takes a little bit of time to settle in ... but I think you can still get a lot of performance out of it straight away."
The Dutchman is gearing up for one of his toughest title battles as the 2023 F1 season could feature both Ferrari and Mercedes challenging Red Bull. The cost cap breach penalty could handicap the Austrian team, and the impact it has will be worth keeping an eye on.