Aitken says Verstappen is “more gentle” with Leclerc than with Hamilton

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Williams’ reserve driver Jack Aitken says he doesn’t think Max Verstappen “sees Leclerc as a threat in the same way that he sees Hamilton”.

There has been a lot of talk about Max Verstappen’s driving style in 2022, more specifically his less aggressive battles with Charles Leclerc.

Most of the Dutchman’s clashes with Lewis Hamilton in 2021 were highly controversial and often ended in the gravel trap, but this year he seemed very subdued in his on-track battles.

However, once he encountered Hamilton again at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, the two drivers collided, and Max was later penalized.

During his appearance on the Chequered Flag podcast, Williams’ reserve driver Jack Aitken was asked to comment on clashes between Hamilton and Verstappen.

“They can’t give an inch to each other,” Aitken said.

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“As soon as one gives an inch it’s such a win in the psychological battle, isn’t it? When you’re up against that guy, you know every time you see them on track you cannot give this guy anything.

“You just have to win every time, every corner, every time you go side by side, because it’s such a blow when you don’t.”

Aitken then explained how he thinks Max is more aggressive with Lewis, because he sees him as more of a threat than Leclerc.

“I think he is a little bit more gentle with Leclerc. Gentle is probably over-egging it a little bit, he’s still going for it, but they don’t collide.

“Respectful because I don’t think he sees Leclerc as a threat in the same way that he sees Hamilton”, he concluded.

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