Binotto cheering for Verstappen but tips Hamilton for F1 title

Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto says he will be cheering for Max Verstappen to win the Formula 1 title battle this year, but believes Lewis Hamilton will ultimately triumph.

Binotto cheering for Verstappen but tips Hamilton for F1 title

After the first half of a season dominated by the Red Bull and Mercedes drivers, only extreme circumstances will prevent either Verstappen or Hamilton coming out on top.

Ferrari is well out of the title contest, as it finds itself locked in its own battle with McLaren for third place in the constructors’ championship.

The two teams are tied on 163 points each after the Hungarian Grand Prix, as Sebastian Vettel's disqualification from the race promoted the Ferrari of Carlos Sainz Jr to the final spot on the podium.

But while Binotto says he would be happy if Verstappen won, to break the monopoly that Mercedes and Hamilton have had on F1 for many years, he reckons that the Dutchman will more than likely lose out.

Asked for his views on the contest, Binotto said: “It’s an exciting battle, first of all.

“They are two extraordinary drivers, and very talented. One has already shown it and the other has undisputed speed from everything he has shown.

“If I had to make a bet, I think Lewis wins. I say this because I think Mercedes wins.

"They are a solid team and they have shown what they are in recent years.

“I think they have all the elements to win in the end and, as the reigning champions, they are the ones to be beaten.”

Mattia Binotto, Team Principal, Ferrari

Mattia Binotto, Team Principal, Ferrari

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

But despite his prediction, Binotto said he would like Verstappen to come out on top – or at the very least to take the title battle to the final round.

Read Also:

“I hope they can fight until the very end,” he said. “That means an open championship, an exciting fight and one that it is as close a battle as possible for the show itself as well.

“I always cheer for ourselves at Ferrari but I also cheer for Max, because I think it is good for sport to break the status quo.”

Following his Hungary fightback, Hamilton is eight points clear of Verstappen in the drivers’ championship, having won four races over the first half of the campaign compared to his rival’s five.

shares
comments

Related video

F1 Dutch Grand Prix to go ahead with 70,000 fans amid Covid restrictions

Previous article

F1 Dutch Grand Prix to go ahead with 70,000 fans amid Covid restrictions

Next article

How Aston Martin plans to bounce back from Hungary F1 disappointment

How Aston Martin plans to bounce back from Hungary F1 disappointment
Load comments
The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team Plus

The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team

Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Autosport's technical consultant

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence Plus

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence

In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding 
into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? STUART CODLING talks to the man in charge

Formula 1
Oct 17, 2021
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Plus

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Plus

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers Plus

Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021
Turkish Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Turkish Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a day that the number two Mercedes enjoyed a rare day in the sun, the Turkish Grand Prix produced several standout drives - not least from a driver who has hit a purple patch of late

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for shock Turkish GP glory Plus

The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for shock Turkish GP glory

Starting 11th after his engine change grid penalty, Lewis Hamilton faced a tough task to repeat his Turkish Grand Prix heroics of 2020 - despite making strong early progress in the wet. Instead, his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas broke through for a first win of the year to mitigate Max Verstappen re-taking the points lead

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form Plus

How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form

A Formula 1 pitstop is a rapid-fire blend of high technology and human performance. PAT SYMONDS describes how the science of margin gains makes stops so quick

Formula 1
Oct 10, 2021