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Verstappen Says He ‘Never Imagined’ Winning 41 Grands Prix After Equalling Senna’s Victory Tally in Montreal

(Photo: Michael Potts)

Max Verstappen has expressed that it is “something incredible” to reach the same number of victories as Ayrton Senna on F1’s all-time victory list. His win in Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix has brought both drivers to 41 wins each.

Verstappen led the race at the Montreal venue, finishing ahead of Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton. This victory not only matched the late three-time world champion Senna’s tally but also marked the 100th win for his Red Bull team.

Reflecting on this significant achievement, Verstappen said, “I mean, I hate to compare different generations. From my side, the only thing I can say is that when I was a little kid driving in go-karting, I was dreaming about being a Formula 1 driver and I would have never imagined to win 41 Grands Prix.”

He continued, “Of course, to tie with Ayrton is something incredible. I’m proud of that, but of course, I hope it’s not stopping here, you know – I hope that we can keep on winning more races.”

Verstappen’s victory coincided with Father’s Day, and he took the opportunity to honor his father, Jos Verstappen, who “invested all his time” to help him reach Formula 1 and achieve these records. Jos had a Grand Prix career that included stints with Benetton, Tyrrell, Arrows, and Minardi.

“He was preparing everything, go-karts, engines and then driving all the way to Italy with me, in between school, then back… So many stories we can share,” Verstappen Junior said of his early karting days. “Sometimes we still talk about it when we are together – it’s crazy.”

Verstappen also acknowledged the sacrifices his father made, saying, “I probably only will fully realize how much he has done for me once I get kids, then you start to understand this kind of relationship. But yeah, without him, I would not sit here today. He has taught me so much and prepared me so much from a very young age.”

“Sometimes I thought, ‘Why does it need to be so serious straightaway?’, where you maybe want to play around a bit more and have fun, but he was working towards this goal. He had this goal set for me to first of all be better than him and then try to get to F1, and then I got to F1,” Verstappen shared.

Verstappen also highlighted their ongoing communication, “We still call every day. Before the race, I was talking to him about what we’re going to do with the strategy and stuff like that. He likes to know even when he’s not here and just like to have that kind of relationship with your dad… After go-karting, when you go into cars, it’s a bit less personal what was happening here.”

“Sometimes you miss these kinds of go-karting times when you’re traveling together in a van all the way there. But yeah, to share these moments together, I think, is very special. Today was, of course, also Father’s Day, so I don’t need to buy him a present. I did this, so I think he’s happy!” Verstappen concluded.

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