O although Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen are clearly number 1 in their teams, the three superstars have not yet met very often on the podium. In Abu Dhabi, in 81 races together, it was only the fifth time that there was a trophy for all three after crossing the finish line.
While things can get heated on the track, the three of them showed up Title competitors at the subsequent press conference unusually relaxed. If you didn't know that there was only harmless rose water instead of champagne in the Arab countries, you could almost have thought that alcohol was involved here.
Instead of simply answering the questions of the media representatives, they chatted three protagonists cheerfully among each other - and played a lot of jokes. When asked whether Verstappen, with his limited experience, was already ready for the title fight, the humorous exchange began:
Hamilton: How many years have you been driving now? Was that your third year?
Verstappen: My fourth.
Hamilton: Man ... You're getting old.
Vettel: A veteran. You already have a few wrinkles.
Verstappen: The job is also strenuous and stressful.
Vettel: How would it be with botox?
Verstappen: Yes, maybe I should give it a try.
Hamilton: Max is that Ridden well all year. He was often on the podium with us. If his team continues to do a good job, then of course he can fight for the title. He's already finished third, right?
Verstappen: No, fourth. Two points behind. At least I don't have to go to the FIA gala.
Hamilton: You were really lucky.
Verstappen: We have that calculated exactly. Unless I can compensate that as social service. Then I would go.
Hamilton: No, you can't count that as charitable work.
Verstappen: Me would also do some PR work beforehand and say how great the location is. And then give a great speech in the evening.
Hamilton: I don't have any plans for yet the winter. The seasons are getting longer and longer, so the recovery phase in between becomes more and more important. I will probably continue with the free practice a little longer. That works best for me. I also do DIY. I always break something first so I can fix it.
Verstappen: I'll just be at home and spend some time with friends for whom I normally don't have enough time have.
Hamilton: And free practice?
Verstappen: Yes, lots of free practice.
Hamilton: So you will stay with free training?
Verstappen: Yes, definitely free training.