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Verstappen on pressure: I've already completed my career

Although Red Bull have dominated the 2023 F1 season so far, Max Verstappen believes there is still pressure to perform in the best car on the grid.

It is tough to imagine that Max Verstappen has any sort of pressure on him given that he has dominated Formula 1 for the last 12 months. The two-time champion has won five of the seven races so far in 2023 by a comfortable margin. But while Red Bull has turned up to each weekend with a car capable of winning out of the box, they have still encountered challenges to overcome. In Saudi Arabia Verstappen suffered from driveshaft issues, then braking problems affected both cars in Melbourne, while set-up compromises offered an early scare for the team after they ran smoothly in pre-season testing at Bahrain. Verstappen believes the pressure to perform gets easier with experience, but it gets more personal as he searches for more success. "I put myself under pressure to always perform. I think I've proven already enough that even if you have a few tough moments, that's not going to be a problem," Verstappen told media, including RacingNews365.com . "At the end of the day, I've already completed my career in F1. So I'm not really under pressure from that side. "But I always want to win more and that's why I want to win more, I want to be the best I can be. So that is from my side the pressure."

Verstappen: Pressure early in career to perform to get a top team drive

After winning his first race at just 18 years old, it became a 'coming of age' moment that validated his rapid ascendancy through the junior ranks. Verstappen believes a lot of the pressure he experienced early on in his career was centred around getting a drive at a top team. "I think because you have a lot more experience now, you know how to handle everything a lot better," said Verstappen. "When you're in your first season, you put a lot of pressure on yourself, because you really want to show yourself and push yourself to a top team." Now that he is at that level, the Dutchman is trying to find the balance between maintaining the pressure to perform while also ensuring that it leads to improvements. He added: "It's all about just trying to maintain [pressure], but also try to keep on improving step by step. It's not going to be big, big steps but every year you try to do a little bit better, just keep that pressure on yourself."

RESULTS 2024 F1 Spanish Grand Prix