F1 MERCENARY wrote: mds wrote:
When Hamilton competed in F3 it was 2 rungs down from F1, when Verstappen competed in F3 it was 3 rungs down from F1, the driver that won the title, Ocon then went into GP3.
Hamilton competed in the F3 Euroseries which later got disbanded and replaced by GP3, F3 then later got rehashed but at a lower level to what it was originally.
And Verstappen was a single seater rookie outright, and he still went up against some promising drivers.
But this dicussion doesn't even have to revolve around their first seasons in F3. The statement was simple, "aged 20 Hamilton was better than Verstappen". And then the plain simple facts are Hamilton had just come fifth in F3 while Verstappen has just imperiously won an F1 race. That statement was nonsense.
I fully get your argument but pokerman outlined the layers to the information you're basing your opinion on and you're dismissing it.
I'm also pointing out things he isn't taking into account - like Verstappen being an absolute car racing rookie in F3 when he started and how that works to his disadvantage when comparing their rookie F3 seasons.
But as I said, we don't even have to compare their rookie F3 seasons. Point is that Hamilton, aged 20, was driving in F3 while Verstappen, aged 20, is a frontrunner in F1, has very much earned his place and is hot property, arguably top 4 driver or at least top 5.
One simply can't say Hamilton was better, aged 20, than Verstappen is, aged 20. I'm not saying he was much worse or something, but really nothing will make a convincing or compelling argument for him being better - there only seem to be mitigating factors (not being at ART being the prime one) for why he came fifth in F3.
I get what you are saying about their karting careers, I won't dispute it, but I wasn't saying Max's karting career was better than Hamilton's. I was saying two things mainly:
1. Verstappen was also very experienced in karts by the time he got to single seaters
2. He was also regarded as a phenomenon in karts, and regardless of Hamilton having a harder time, Max did set a few very noteworthy records as mentioned before. It's his karting performances that got him on the radar to begin with, in Europe everybody was talking about him way before he came to single seaters.
It really is not apples to apples and one thing I want everyone to keep in mind is that I rate Max very highly so it's not like I'm bashing on him. He is indeed quite fast, but at times he compensates for lack of speed with aggressive tactics where for the most part has seen him be lucky the other guy was quick enough to avoid accidents. In Monaco in particular where drivers are likely tested more extremely than on any other circuit in the world, he's crashed a couple of times. And while it can happen to anyone due to the extreme close confines spanning the entire length of the circuit, it happened to him. That in and of itself speaks volumes as to where he falls in line with the top guys. Hamilton botched it twice himself but not while trying to go fast on the limit. At least that I can recall off the top of my head. Once in China entering the pits and Canada 2008 but he was in the mix for a championship for the 2nd year in succession. Max has yet to challenge for one but I stated months ago he is better than his highly touted teammate and was told I was wrong because the points since last year didn't support my argument. I have no doubt Max will become one of the top drivers soon enough, but right now IMPO that's not the case just yet and I find Hamilton was better at 20 than max is today, but I think you really have to go back and watch Lewis's 2007 & 2008 performances back to see how excellent he was at 20 to see understand why I see it that way.
Well, I could agree with most of this paragraph, but the bit in bold is puzzling me a bit... Hamilton was 22-23 in 2007-2008. How does that tell us how good he was a few years before that?