Mercedes Formula 1 chief Toto Wolff believes Max Verstappen needs to lose his "raw edges" if he is to become a world champion, feeling his incident with Esteban Ocon in Brazil was part of his learning process as a driver.

Red Bull driver Verstappen lost a potential victory last weekend in Brazil after contact with the lapped Esteban Ocon, resulting in an angry spat between the pair after the chequered flag.

5774263478001

CrashTV: 

Five-time world champion Lewis Hamilton said he felt Verstappen could have handled the incident better on-track, with video footage from Ocon's car showing the Force India driver to be going considerably faster, reasoning his decision to try and unlap himself.

Speaking about the incident, Wolff said that while Verstappen had the right traits to become a world champion, he would need to work on perfecting certain areas to maximise his potential.

"You can see there is a future champion coming together, unbelievable talent and speed," Wolff said.

"I think once the raw edges are off, he will be somebody who will be a world champion one day.

"In a few years, he will look at the footage of [Brazil] and maybe have his own opinion as to whether that was the right behaviour or not.

"But you can’t accelerate those things. This is a learning process."

Red Bull F1 advisor Helmut Marko suggested after the race that Ocon may have deliberately made contact with Verstappen as he is a Mercedes junior driver, helping Hamilton take the win for Mercedes.

Wolff refused to be drawn on the matter, though, saying: "This is how Dr. Marko sees the world, and I want to leave it with that. I don’t want to go on this level. We have a fifth world championship to celebrate."

Comments

Loading Comments...