F1’s young star Max Verstappen will be fighting for victories in 2017 as Red Bull look to challenge the dominance of the Mercedes team.
Verstappen achieved star status by winning the 2016 Spanish Grand Prix in his very first race for Red Bull.
The 18-year-old eclipsed Sebastian Vettel, who finished third in Spain last season, as the youngest-ever driver to win an F1 race.
As the son of former driver Jos Verstappen, he is also the first Dutch driver to win an F1 race. Verstappen was born in Belgium to a Belgian Mom but races under the Netherlands flag.
Asked by CNN in Barcelona whether his son was now the biggest sports star in the Netherlands, his Dad Jos, pictured here, replied: “If he wasn’t, he is now.”
“The expectation around him and his impact in the Netherlands is sky high, and so in that sense he is the new Cruyff,” says Dutch journalist Frank Woestenburg, seen here in Spain (third from left.)
Verstappen made his F1 debut in 2015 at Toro Rosso alongside Carlos Sainz (left) but it was the Dutch driver who was sensationally promoted to Red Bull just 10 days before the Spanish Grand Prix in 2016.
There could be another Verstappen on the grid in the future. Sister Victoria, seen here with Dad Jos on a visit to watch Max in Barcelona 2015, is also a racer.