#Max Verstappen was, undoubtedly, the great sensation of the 2016 Formula One season. His critics and detractors spent so much time saying he is just a marketing product from Red Bull and FIA that little of their time was given to analysis. For instance, Daniil Kvyat's return to Toro Rosso. After his "SennaSchumacher-like" exhibition in Brazil, lots of bigs names - including Niki Lauda and Mario Andretti - hailed the teenage Dutchman as the future of F1.
Having completed already two seasons, he is just 19 years old. Today, our question is - if Verstappen could race until 2040; would he be doing something that Michael Schumacher already did? .
This sounds somewhat absurd, but it's a question on the record of longevity in Formula One at the highest level. We just "lost" Jenson Button, with 17 full seasons, the last driver from the twentieth century. But let us take this record with the difference between the first and last Grand Prix. It belongs to Michael Schumacher, with 21 years and 3 months, between 1991 and 2012. When he retired, he was 43 years old.
Schumacher's extreme longevity deserves an article for itself. Let us just compare both cases. It's not saying that Verstappen will be the next multi-champion; it's just to assume that he may be around for many years (just like Jenson Button). Verstappen has shown signs that he's an heir of Senna and Schumacher in their extreme dedication to the race, playing simulator racing games and doing go-karts in his spare time.
Moreover, having a former F1 driver as his father, one might expect his motivation to keep very high.
If Max Verstappen quits #Formula 1 in the same age Schumacher did (43 years), he will do it in 2040. This means that the dutchman could do 26 full seasons, assuming he wouldn't "take a break" like the german took between 2007 and 2009. Schumacher’s record would vanish.
Grand Prix: time period between first and last
Next to the 7-time champion, the second in this list is Rubens Barrichello, with an 18 years range between the South African Grand Prix of 1993 and his homeland final race in 2011. Then, separated by a mere seven days, are Jenson Button and Graham Hill (16 years). Also with 16 years are the Italians Riccardo Patrese and Luca Badoer, who may be overtaken next year by Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen; coming all the way from 2001, these past decade champions do not have retirement in sight, yet.
By the way, Lewis Hamilton is just 31 years old now; do you think he will hang around 12 more years or will he dedicate himself to music? Leave your comment below!