Unlike the 2021 Formula 1 season, where the title battle went to the very last lap of the season at Abu Dhabi, albeit controversially, Max Verstappen has demonstrated a type of dominance arguably not seen since Lewis Hamilton in 2020 or Sebastian Vettel in 2013.
2022 has been Verstappen’s year, with there being absolutely no doubt about that.
The imperious Dutchman not only sealed his second World Drivers’ Championship with four races to go after claiming glory in Japan; he’s also gone on to smash a number of records completely out of the park.
His 14th victory of the season at last weekend’s Mexican Grand Prix saw the 25-year-old eclipse Michael Schumacher’s and Vettel’s joint record of most wins in a single season, with there being the chance that Verstappen could push the benchmark to 16 wins.
Whilst more races are completed nowadays than 10, 20 years ago, a record is still a record, and it’s another one that now has the Dutchman’s name plastered all over it.
Verstappen has also claimed the record for most points scored in a single season, representing a “phenomenal year” for the Red Bull driver.
It has led to suggestions by reporters that the championship is in the midst of a ‘Verstappen era’, something that is undoubtedly happening.
Red Bull boss Christian Horner couldn’t speak any more positively about his star driver following the Mexican GP, where he hailed the Dutchman’s “domination”.
“I think actually what we’ve witnessed is an absolutely outstanding performance from a driver that’s very much at the top of his game,” Horner said.
“Max has broken the record for points, I think the most laps led as well… It’s been a phenomenal year for him.
“There’s been years of domination with Mercedes, but I think as an individual driver, probably yes (he’s put together the most dominant season).
“He’s won the most grands prix in a year now, within 21 races, on top of that he’s won two Sprint races, and he’s not won all of them from pole position — he’s had to fight and race for a lot of those victories.
“So I think when we look back at the end of the year, it is an absolutely outstanding year that Max has driven. He hasn’t put a wheel wrong, he’s been perfect throughout the season — it’s incredible the level of consistency that he’s been able to achieve.”