The Dutchman has already impressed many with just 4 years into the F1 grid who has just got out of his teenage. Aged 17 years, 166 days, he became the youngest driver to compete in Formula 1 at the 2015 Australian Grand Prix for Scuderia Toro Rosso.
Starting his karting career at an age of 4 years, he rose above the ranks and at the age of 15, Verstappen won the 2013 World KZ championship at Varennes-sur-Allier, France, in KZ1, the highest karting category. His first racing car experience was at the Pembrey Circuit on 11 October 2013. After testing for several Formula Renault 2.0 teams in 2013, he was signed by the Van Amersfoort Racing to drive in the FIA European Formula 3 2014 season where he finished at 3rd place. A remarkable string of six consecutive victories at Spa and the Norisring thrust him into second in the championship and earned the attention of a number of F1 teams, among them Red Bull.
Motorsport in Blood
Motorsport was in Verstappen’s blood, his father Jos was competing in Formula 1 racing at the time for Tyrrell in Japan just 10 days after Max’s birth while his mother Sophie Kumpen was a successful, and extremely quick, karter. Although Verstappen resided in Belgium, he decided to compete with a Dutch racing license as he liked to spend more time with his father than with his mother owing to his karting activities.
Formula One Career
In August 2014 it was announced that Verstappen had joined Red Bull’s distinguished junior driver programme. Less than a week later, the latest milestone of his meteoric rise was confirmed as Red Bull placed him with Toro Rosso for 2015.
Verstappen became the youngest driver to start a World Championship race by joining the sport a year before the license restriction, which was called as the Super License of F1, raising the age limit to 18 from the 2016 season. Red Bull’s faith in the Dutchman was unquestionable while Verstappen’s scintillating F3 results and impressive rookie F1 outings hinted that Max Verstappen might really be the once in a generation talent Red Bull believed they had unearthed. Despite the predictable intensive preparations for the then 17-year-old’s debut season, by the year's end, he had earned 22 more points than any other rookie and picked up a record three FIA award - Rookie of the Year, Personality of the Year and Action of the Year.
Verstappen began the 2016 season at Toro Rosso, again alongside Sainz, and when only 4 races were left for the season Red Bull decided to swap in Verstappen for Kvyat, as Red Bull’s Team Principal Christian Horner was highly impressed by the Dutchman’s outstanding young talent. Upholding the move up from sister team, he stunned by winning on debut for his new squad and a further six podiums followed as he impressed all with his daring overtakes and wet-weather prowess.
Though 2017 got him a 6th place at standings, it was an unlucky season for the team involving too many mechanical issues losing the title-contention pace to Ferrari and Mercedes. 2018 season has been a tough start as well, where Verstappen has been involved in at least one incident in each of the first 6 races. In Monaco, Verstappen made another error when he crashed near the end of the third free practice session, which closely resembled a crash he had at the same spot two years earlier. Despite all these usual inexperienced incidents no-one could argue that a new F1 superstar has arrived.