When can Max Verstappen win the F1 championship this year?

Max Verstappen is on course to retain the championship title  (REUTERS)
Max Verstappen is on course to retain the championship title (REUTERS)

Max Verstappen now has a 125-point lead over the second-placed driver and looks to be on course to retain his Formula One championship title for another year.

The 25-year-old went into the summer break with ten victories to his name, eight of them in a row.

For Checo Perez to win, he would have to finish first five times, assuming the reigning champion did not score on any of them - as Verstappen’s lead is equivalent to five race wins.

Max Verstappen was Formula 1’s youngest-ever competitor at just 17 years old and later became its youngest race winner – aged 18. He is the son of former F1 driver Jos Verstappen and karting mum Sophie Kumpen, so racing runs through his genes.

He recently reflected on winning nine races in a row.

But the list of potential candidates to win goes all the way to eleventh-placed Oscar Piastri, so when could he potentially seal the title?

When could Max Verstappen win the F1 title in 2023?

​​If Verstappen wins the next four Grands Prix and Perez finishes lower than seventh, the title would already be secured at the conclusion of the Japanese GP. Thus, the stage for a third successive title could be the same as the one where he did it for the second time last year.

If he took that victory, he would also equal last year’s record of 14 wins.

Could Max Verstappen win the title without winning a race again?

It seems unlikely that this would happen because of the verdict of the first half of the season. But assuming that the victory in the Belgian GP would be the last of the season for the leader of the standings, he would still have a chance to win the title. To do so, Verstappen would have to finish second to Perez in every race and sprint.