F1: Monza curse looms over Max Verstappen’s win record - could World Champion not win Italian Grand Prix?
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Max Verstappen will be looking to set a record this weekend by claiming a tenth consecutive victory during the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. The Dutch driver, 25, has secured nine consecutive wins, equalling the record set by Sebastian Vettel in 2013.
The two-time World Champion is on target for his third title as he leads the championship by 137 points. At the moment the driver seems unstoppable from his winning streak and with just nine races left it seems as though the Red Bull driver will continue his dominance.
Even a rain-soaked race at Zandvoort couldn’t stop the driver’s winning streak as he secured a win at his home race last weekend. The RB19 car itself also seems incapable of failure and has been described by many as a “rocketship”.
However, fans are now wondering if Verstappen will become the latest victim of the Monza Curse this weekend. It could leave Sergio Perez with an opportunity to try and take back some points or even give consistent podium winners Lando Norris and Fernando Alonso the opportunity to secure a win.
What is the Monza Curse?
The Monza Curse is only a fan-theory but has continued to look more credible as each year passes. The curse suggests that the driver who wins the race one year, will not cross the finish line the following year.
The Monza Curse first began in 2019 after Charles Leclerc won the Monza Grand Prix after a dramatic fight with Valtteri Bottas. However, the next year, Leclerc suffered a nasty crash as he turned into Parabolica.
Pierre Gasly, who was driving for AlphaTauri in 2020, then took his first F1 podium place before crashing into the barrier during lap one the following year. Gasly’s crash then allowed Australian driver Daniel Ricciardo to take the win for McLaren in 2021.
Ricciardo then also fell victim to the Monza Curse and did not finish the race in 2022 after suffering an engine failure mid-race. Verstappen then took the win last year, with many now waiting to see if he will face the same fate this weekend.