Lewis Hamilton claims Max Verstappen wants to ‘show how tough’ he is

Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen collided on the seventh lap of the Brazilian Grand Prix earlier this year.

Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen’s rivalry is certainly a fascinating one, given how hard the duo have pushed each other, especially in 2021.

Whilst Hamilton has dominated the vast majority of the hybrid era, 2021 was a very different season.

Hamilton and Verstappen pushed one another at every single round, with the pair having looked visibly exhausted at times during the campaign due to the intensity they were competing at.

That intensity, though, occasionally boiled over, with the pair having collided with each other several times in 2021.

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Verstappen’s battle with Charles Leclerc in 2022 has been drastically different, with the duo having battled fairly on every occasion.

Remarkably, despite Hamilton having not been involved in the championship fight this season, himself and Verstappen still managed to collide, at the Brazilian Grand Prix.

It is somewhat ironic that on the one occasion where Hamilton was truly in with a chance to win, that himself and the Dutchman ruined each other’s race.

The pair collided on the seventh lap of the race at Interlagos, with the 37-year-old having suffered minor floor damage as a result of the collision.

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Following the race in Brazil, Hamilton explained that he effectively felt targeted by the double World Champion, perhaps due to his “success”.

“I feel like it is self-explanatory,” Hamilton told Channel 4.

“You have to listen to the words that certain individuals say about me, competitor-wise, and also look back at the way those individuals behave on track around me. It kind of shows you it is most often a little bit different to others.

“I can’t explain exactly why but part of it is for sure to do with the time I have had here, the experience I have had here, the success I have had here.”

Interestingly, Hamilton admitted that he can relate to Verstappen, in regard to wanting to beat the very best from the moment you enter the sport.

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Hamilton added that as a driver you want to “show how tough” you are to those at the very top, something Verstappen has certainly done.

“I know because when I got to the sport, that target was someone else who had had the success and my goal was to challenge them,” Hamilton added.

“You almost wanted to show how tough you were, how good you were compared to that person, etcetera.”