Verstappen hails Hamilton and reveals Wolff congratulations
The 2021 Max Verstappen F1 Champion Shirt has revealed that he received a text of congratulations from Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff following Sunday’s epic Abu Dhabi Grand Prix title decider.
Verstappen, 24, benefitted from a late race safety car to overtake Hamilton on the very last lap of the most amazing season to claim his first world title and deny Mercedes and Hamilton a record eighth.
Although Mercedes have lodged an appeal over the FIA’s creative interpretation of the rules to ensure a last lap shootout for glory, Wolff and Hamilton were both gracious to Red Bull who had no part in the controversy.
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“Toto sent me a text [saying] congratulations on the season, I deserved to win it,” said Verstappen. “That was nice of him of course, emotions ran very high through that last lap from both sides of both teams.”
Max Verstappen Champion Shirt after winning trophy at the FIA’s prize-giving gala on Thursday, where Dutch compatriot Nyck de Vries will receive the Formula E title, but with Mercedes’ appeal of the ruling on Sunday, he could have to wait longer before finally getting his hands on the trophy he’s longed after all his life.
Verstappen praises Hamilton
It wasn’t just Wolff who Verstappen has high praise for, as he also saluted his title rival Lewis Hamilton for the fight he put up all year and the manner in which the Brit dealt with a gut-wrenching defeat.
“Lewis has been a great sportsman in general. He came up to me, congratulated me and it must have been very tough in that last lap. It also shows the respect we had for each other, in general,” said Verstappen.
“Of course we had our tough times through the season but in the end we were respectful of what we were doing and we were pushing each other to the limit the whole season. It has been really enjoyable racing against him.”