Ex-Formula 1 driver Felipe Massa says he sees no reason why Max Verstappen won’t win up to six titles in a row.
Verstappen has won the last two championships, with his maiden coming in 2021 following an intense season-long battle with Lewis Hamilton.
In 2022, the Dutchman dominated the campaign, winning 15 grands prix during the year to cruise to the title.
His defence this year started strongly in Bahrain as he was unchallenged at the season-opening race to secure his 36th win.
However, Verstappen’s momentum stalled in Saudi Arabia when a drive shaft issue during qualifying forced him to park up during Q2.
He started the race from 15th on the grid and recovered to second, with team-mate Sergio Perez taking the victory.
Massa described Verstappen as a “robot” and has backed the 25-year-old to dominate the coming years in F1.
“Max doesn’t make mistakes, he drives like a robot,” Massa, who drove for teams such as Ferrari and Williams, told Bild.
“He is extremely mature for his age. The two titles made him even better. He’s more relaxed now, not so dogged.
“Verstappen has become world champion for the past two years, I don’t see any reason why he shouldn’t get the hat-trick.
“Max can also win four, five or six titles in a row. Max doesn’t make any mistakes, Red Bull works perfectly, the engine is strong.
“That’s how it was with Michael [Schumacher] with Ferrari and Lewis [Hamilton] with Mercedes. The conditions are ideal for a Red Bull era.”
During the opening rounds of the campaign, Red Bull’s rivals have commended the pace of the RB19 car, with some describing it as being in another league.
However, team boss Christian Horner played down the possibility of dominating the entire 2022 campaign, stating he expects the field to convert as the year goes on.