A picture of a scene from a series called Drive to Survive
Formula 1: Drive to Survive

Formula 1 World Champion Max Verstappen believes Netflix is ‘faking rivalries’ between drivers to add to the drama of the hit streaming show Drive to Survive.

Verstappen, who goes into the maiden race of the new Formula 1 season this weekend hoping to begin a successful defence of his title, has refused to be a part of the show he describes as ‘more like a reality show’.

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He used the example of the show’s portrayal of a brooding rivalry between McLaren drivers within the latest series of the hit show, which dropped on the streaming platform last week. Verstappen says this isn’t the case.

He said: “I watched two episodes, but I was not very impressed. It’s just not my thing, faking rivalries.

“Lando [Norris] and Daniel [Ricardo] are two great people I know – they have really great characters and immediately at the second episode it looks like they are not very friendly to each other, and for me that’s not correct and that’s why I’m also not a part of it.”

In an interview with the BBC, Verstappen, who controversially pipped Brit Lewis Hamilton to the title in 2021, said the number of people brought to the sport via the series may have now peaked.

“At one point [it helps to bring in audience] but that effect also runs out. I think we’re beyond that stage now and it’s more like a reality show in my opinion. Plus it takes way too much time anyway. I need to focus on the racing and have private time and not spend another half an hour at the race weekend when they need to talk to you.”

Of course, it’s entirely consistent with this type of filmmaking to see the show focus in on and embellish potential storylines, so Verstappen’s comments are hardly gasp-worthy.

The comments come ahead of Sunday’s Bahrain Grand Prix. You’ll be able to watch the race in 4K HDR, thanks to Sky Sports. You’ll need a Sky subscription with either Sky Q or Sky Glass. For regular HD streams you can watch with a Now TV subscription.

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