While Max Verstappen has dual Belgian and Dutch nationality, his father Jos Verstappen has been highly critical of the media’s treatment of the current Formula 1 world champion in Max’s mother’s home country of Belgium.
Max Verstappen stepped up to the next level in 2021 F1. The 24-year-old Dutchman won the Formula One World Championship for the first time in his career. However, the Red Bull driver seems to be able to keep his head screwed on, according to his father Jos Verstappen. The latter commented on the media frenzy following his son’s victory, particularly in the Belgian press.
“In the eyes of some Belgian media, Max is suddenly a Belgian.”
“Everyone wants a piece of Max at the moment,” says Jos,
“On the one hand, it’s a nice compliment for him. He is incredibly good, in the car, but also outside. Since the title he’s been handling it well, keeping his head and being himself. So I understand that many people are proud.
“Of course I am. But there are times when I have a hard time with that. For example, in the eyes of some Belgian media, Max is suddenly a Belgian!
“I think that’s a bit disappointing. We’ve been racing for years, but until a few months ago there was little or no writing about him in Belgium and now they’re suddenly claiming he’s theirs. I don’t see it that way at all myself.
“Max has both nationalities, as me and Sophie were married at the time of his birth. But as he races under a Dutch license, he is slightly more Dutch than Belgian. That’s how he feels himself.
“If the Netherlands were to play Belgium, he would be in the orange army. And if he had to choose one nationality, it would be the Dutch one,” said Jos Verstappen to the French media.