Sky Sports lambasted for ‘disrespect’ as Max Verstappen told to consider new boycott

Max Verstappen boycotted Sky Sports F1 for an entire Grand Prix weekend last season, due to the way he was being spoken about.

Sky Sports F1 have been criticised by for treating reigning World Champion Max Verstappen differently, as recently as last weekend’s Dutch Grand Prix.

Verstappen’s home race last weekend was a chaotic affair, which saw heavy rain at the end of the opening lap lead to an immediate change to the Intermediate tyres for most drivers.

Sergio Perez was the first to pit for the Intermediates and ended up inheriting a 14-second lead, once the majority of the drivers pitted on the following lap.

Unsurprisingly, Verstappen closed this gap in rapid fashion, before Red Bull decided to pit the Dutchman first when the circuit returned to being dry.

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Usually, a team will prioritise the driver in the lead position, yet this wasn’t the case for the Austrians at Zandvoort.

Pitting Verstappen first allowed the two-time World Champion to undercut Checo, something which was heavily discussed by the Sky Sports F1 pundits.

It was questioned why Red Bull didn’t favour Checo given that he was leading the race, something team principal Christian Horner later insisted was down to those behind Verstappen.

Verstappen went onto win the race, marking his 11th win of the season and his ninth in a row, matching Sebastian Vettel’s record for 2023.

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It’s not the first time in which Verstappen has been spoken about in a different manner, with it having been said in the Sky Sports F1 booth at the Miami Grand Prix that F1 “needs less tyre saving”.

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This was said after Verstappen won from ninth on the grid, thanks to a phenomenal stint on his first set of tyres, which lasted almost the entirety of the race.

Beyondtheflag question why Sky Sports say this when it’s Verstappen it’s completed a deep run into the race, whereas Perez is referred to as the “tyre whisperer” when he completes a long distance on the same set of tyres.

Verstappen actually decided not to speak to Sky Sports F1 for a whole Grand Prix weekend last season due to the way he was being spoken about, as the 2021 finale continued to be discussed by their punditry team.