Ahead of the Monaco GP, Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen exchanged cold words.

Their rivalry just got way more interesting and heated before the Monaco GP. With both drivers engaged in a battle for the WDC, it is a thrilling affair filled with tension. It seems both drivers are as competitive as ever.

Hamilton sees "opportunity" in potential Verstappen team-up
Lewis Hamilton (right) and Max Verstappen (left) are having an amazing rivalry. Source: motorsport.com

Hamilton started the war of words with a claim about Verstappen, saying he has a lot to prove and is obsessed with being the fastest every race.

During a media conference, Hamilton said, “I think I’ve done well to avoid all the incidents so far, but we’ve got 19 more (races) to go and we could connect.”

“I think perhaps (Verstappen) feels he has a lot to prove. I’m not necessarily in the same boat there and I’m more long-term. It’s a marathon, not a sprint’ sort of mentality, which is ultimately why I have the stats that I have.”

Verstappen was obviously not impressed with his rival’s comments, and defended himself in the wake of Hamilton’s jabs.

Responding to the Brit, he said, “I have nothing to prove. And avoiding contact, I believe it goes both ways.”

“So we have done well, that’s true. But we race hard, we’ve avoided contact both sides, so let’s hope we can keep doing that and keep being on track and racing hard against each other.”

Close combat

Verstappen has promised to keep the battle as close as he can, despite trailing his rival by 14 points.

“It’s close. I wish it was closer! It’s a long season and we can’t afford to have any retirement or silly mistakes so we just have to keep on doing what we’re doing,” he explained.

“I think it is what everyone wants to see, but of course, what I want as well,” he added. “The last few years we have not been close enough. So it’s a good start to the season, that’s for sure. And I hope it can be like this for the rest of the season because it keeps everyone excited.”

Read more: “It doesn’t work like this”: Vettel refuses to offer Verstappen any advice on beating Hamilton

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