Former F1 racer Karun Chandhok compared Red Bull’s Max Verstappen to MotoGP ace Marc Marquez, saying that the two racers were similar in their ability to shine under pressure.

Verstappen overcame his most difficult season to become world champion after a great end to his year. He had the weight of the world on his shoulders going up against a seven-time world champion, but he prevailed in the end and achieved his dream.

After building up an insane lead, the experience of his opponent showed as he started staging a comeback. The Dutchman could only be second-best for quite a few weekends, but in the title-deciding race with his back to the wall, he won on the last lap.

With the season over, Chandhok compared Verstappen to MotoGP’s Marc Marquez, and explained how the two racers had the common trait of thriving against the odds.

In a column for Sky Sports, the Indian wrote, “There’s no question in my mind Max was a deserving World Champion.

“In 18 of the 19 races he finished, Verstappen was either first or second, which is a remarkable record of consistently superb performances, especially when you consider this was a 24-year-old coping with the pressure of his first World Championship battle.

Max Verstappen in the Red Bull garage on testing duties. Abu Dhabi, December 2021.
Verstappen (pictured) became champion despite everything thrown at him. Source: planetf1.com

“His phenomenal ability to soak up pressure at such a young age reminds me of MotoGP ace Marc Marquez.”

Effective aggression

“Yes, his wheel-to-wheel racing was hard, on the edge of fairness, and at Monza and Jeddah he even went over the line,” Chandhok added.

“But he has an uncompromising style of racing like Michael Schumacher used to, and the FIA now need to re-define the rules of engagement because clearly, as Brazil and Abu Dhabi showed, there’s a lack of clarity around it.

“Overall, in terms of consistent brilliance, both Lewis (Hamilton) and Max reached a benchmark rarely seen in Formula 1 history and I look forward to seeing the rivalry renewed in 2022.”

Read more: Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen “to be interviewed by FIA” following final race debacle

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