Former Formula 1 racer Juan Pablo Montoya has never been one to shy away from sharing his opinions, his latest comments saying that European drivers are mentally “very weak”.
Montoya believes it is easier to get into the head of European drivers, admitting he thinks they are weaker mentally.
The Colombian burst onto the F1 scene in 2001 with his aggressive and decisive driving style, winning seven races over his five and a half seasons in the sport.
But, mid-way through 2006 he ditched F1 and moved into Nascar, before returning to IndyCar with Team Penske and winning the 2015 Indy 500.
Talking to the official Formula 1 website, Montoya was asked which drivers pushed him to the limit.
Here’s what he had to say and why he feels it’s easier to get into the heads of European drivers:
“I learned a lot when I ran with Ralf (Schumacher), he was really quick. But European drivers are very weak mentally. You can get in their head really easily and I think that explains what you’re seeing today and what you’ve always seen in F1.
“When things go their way, they’re really strong. When Lewis [Hamilton] is winning, he’s unstoppable but if something goes wrong, they spiral down, it’s huge. If the cars’ were closer together I think you would see different people winning.”
Montoya singled out the two Schumacher brothers, but admitted Michael was very tough to beat:
“Michael was one of the few guys that was really strong. You could get in his head but he was strong. Ralf on the other hand was a guy who was nearly impossible to beat, but if you could beat him on his A day, you could get in his head. We all have our weaknesses, you just got to figure out which ones they are.”
He was also quizzed on who he feels is the best driver on the current grid…
“Vettel is probably one of the most complete guys, and also Fernando, I ran with him in my career. I think those are the two best drivers overall. Lewis does a really good job but he’s in the best car. It’s very easy to think that a guy in the best car is the best driver. But the question is, if they were not in the best car how would they handle things. Fernando and Sebastian have endured that and I think they are the best.”
It’s always interesting to hear Montoya’s opinions, he certainly isn’t scared of sharing what he feels.
Just don’t get on his bad side, we all saw what happened when he got shunted by a TV camera…