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Max Verstappen

Coulthard: Verstappen isn't able to get inside Hamilton's head

David Coulthard doesn't believe that Max Verstappen will be able to play mind games with Lewis Hamilton, due to the Mercedes man's mental strength.

Article
To news overview © Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool

David Coulthard believes that any attempts by Max Verstappen to try to play mind games with Lewis Hamilton will be fruitless, given the mental strength of the Mercedes driver.

With just seven races remaining in what has been a tense 2021 championship battle, the psychological pressure of the fight will step up a gear.

Earlier this week, Red Bull boss Christian Horner explained that he feels Hamilton is always trying to play mind games with Verstappen.

"He likes to play mind games," Horner told ServusTV, when discussing Hamilton's approach.

"He uses everything at his disposal to put pressure on Max, and he never wants to be called the favourite.

"Max really doesn't care about it, though. He is the most relaxed driver on the grid and just wants to drive flat out."

Coulthard, now a TV pundit following a successful F1 career, believes that there's no chance of Verstappen being able to successfully use mind games against Hamilton.

"You don't have to be surprised that these two drivers, of all people, are fighting for the title," Coulthard told Speedweek.

"I'm firmly convinced that will continue until the end of the season in Abu Dhabi. [But] I don't think Verstappen can get into Lewis' head.

"They both have such strong teams behind them. They know they can win races at any time, and that creates an incredible amount of confidence."

Coulthard pointed out the lifestyle differences between the pair, saying that they are chalk and cheese in their approach to life.

"The two boys live their lives completely differently," Coulthard said.

"Lewis flew straight from Monza to New York and spent time at the Met Gala doing fashion [while] Max has spent his time privately in Monaco with the family.

"They are so different. Max likes to keep to himself, Lewis is more extroverted. But when they're on track it's all about winning."

Verstappen has already said that he has no interest in playing mind games with Hamilton, and is aiming to keep things simple on track.

"I'm just very straightforward and I don't need these kind of things [mind games] to be involved in," Verstappen told Sky Sports.

"Anyway, it doesn't work. We are all here to race, we all know what we need to do, and that's just drive fast on the track and after that you go home and you enjoy your time off from Formula 1.

"I think it's very important to just immediately shut that down and just focus on what we have to do.

"Lewis and I, I think we have a lot of respect for each other and we enjoy of course battling on track."

Lewis Hamilton claimed his 100th Grand Prix win to move into the championship lead, but it's Red Bull and Max Verstappen who will be happiest after the Russian Grand Prix.

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