Former driver and Le Mans winner Hans-Joachim Stuck believes modern F1 drivers are too nice to each other, leading to issues for the sport. The German driver also believes the sport's emphasis on punishment is bad for its reputation.
Stuck is of the mindset that drivers must 'suck it up' and race, leading to less interruption from stewards. He believes handing out five or ten-second penalties is bad for racing.
Daniel Ricciardo was recently handed a ten-second time penalty for causing a collision with AlphaTauri driver Yuki Tsunoda. Despite his penalty, however, the Australian managed to finish the race in P7, neutralizing his punishment.
The former F1 driver said of the penalties:
"They just need to step on the gas. In Mexico, penalties of five and 10 seconds are also handed out again. They are racing incidents, we can do without those kinds of penalties."
Modern drivers are also known to be friends off the track, often engaging in social interactions in their off-time. Stuck, however, believes drivers needn't be nice to each other off the circuit. He continued:
"They don't have to drink coffee together, do they? They are going to compete with each other, so let that fight be a fight too."
Former F1 driver believes only Lewis Hamilton can challenge Max Verstappen in 2023
Former driver Anthony Davidson believes Lewis Hamilton is the only one who can pose a threat to an uber-dominant Max Verstappen in 2023. Davidson believes that Hamilton, despite the awful season he and Mercedes have had so far, is still good enough to take down Verstappen and bring down his dominance. Davidson told Sky Sports:
"The only person I can see that can mount a serious challenge is Lewis Hamilton. But it's never a given and I don't know who the next Max Verstappen will be that comes along one day to bring the fight to him. But Lewis at the moment, he's definitely still good enough without question and he's the only one that can take this fight to Max (Verstappen)."
The two F1 legends battled throughout the 2021 season, with Verstappen emerging as the 2021 world champion at the end of the final lap of the season. Epic battles of that proportion have yet to be seen in 2022 as Charles Leclerc and Ferrari were unable to mount a significant title fight against the Flying Dutchman.
With Mercedes seemingly making a comeback, however, the 2023 F1 season is likely to be one for the ages.