Gallery: Max Verstappen samples Honda's race winning RA272

Honda's RA272 driven by Max Verstappen

Max Verstappen got the chance to get behind the wheel of Honda's first Grand Prix winning car, the RA272, during a demonstration at the Japanese manufacturer's Tochigi Proving Ground this week.

Verstappen and 2017 Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato got behind the wheel of the 1965 1.5 litre V12 at Honda’s state of the art test facility before the Dutchman slipped into the more familiar cockpit of Red Bull's 2011 RB7 in front of the watching Honda employees.

Verstappen looked like he enjoyed himself during the demo laps
Ex-F1 driver Sato was on hand to give Verstappen some tips

"It was very cool to get to experience this car," said Verstappen. "I think the oldest race car I’ve driven before today was from about 2008. It’s quite different, but I really enjoyed it. The pure emotion from the engine and the car itself was incredible.

Protection? Drivers had very little back in the day!
The RA272 won the 1965 Mexican Grand Prix

"I didn’t even fit properly in the car! But it was an amazing experience for sure. I’m very happy that I was born a bit later [than to have raced this car], but of course I’m really grateful to be able to experience it.

Something a little more modern was also available on the day
Verstappen and Sato also got to drive Red Bull's RB7

"I don’t think I would race it myself, and if you look back 50 years the evolution is insane. But it is good fun to go back to these cars. The main difference in the RB7 was that I had seatbelts! In the other one I didn’t, so it felt a bit odd," he laughed. "With the RA272 I had to shift gears with a foot clutch, which I haven’t done in quite some time. It’s a different feeling but both felt good."

Sato also got behind the wheel of the Honda RA272
Honda employees gathered to watch the demonstration at their Tochigi Proving Ground

Former Jordan, BAR and Honda F1 racer Takuma added: "This is a really special moment for any race car driver. There’s such a nostalgic feeling with it. The car is obviously very different to modern formula cars and race cars and Max has just experienced how tricky it is to make it run smoothly. I’m really fortunate to have had some opportunities to run those old cars at past events and it always makes me smile."

The RA272 was driven by Richie Ginther and Ronnie Bucknum
One for the wallpapers!