Max Verstappen’s much talked about talent isn’t just hype according to Toro Rosso’s senior race engineer, Xevi Pujolar, who has described the 17-year-old as “the best he’s seen”.
Pujolar has been in Formula 1 since 2002 and has worked closely with numerous drivers including Juan Pablo Montoya, Mark Webber, Pastor Maldonado and Jean-Eric Vergne.
The Dutchman has great potential and sits atop the list of drivers Pujolar has worked with, despite having only seen Verstappen test a handful of times.
“He’s the best I’ve seen so far,” he told GPUpdate. “You can see the potential is there.
“Now he needs to deliver. He’s here to be in the points all the time. He’s got the talent. He’s fast. But from being fast to winning races is a big gap. And from winning races to becoming a champion is another big step,” he added.
Pujolar is particularly impressed with the rookie’s discipline and dedication to the sport, which he believes is unmatched.
“Some guys might be 10 or 15 years in motorsports, or even in Formula 1, and their level of professionalism will never be as good as Max’s is at the moment.
“He wants to be the best and he works 100 per cent for that. He wants the people around him to work just as hard. He’s pushing the engine guys, he’s pushing me and he’s pushing the team.”