On the Saturday of Autosport International David Croft took to the stage just before the Guenther Steiner interview to give his views on the last and upcoming Formula 1 season.
He started with questions from the crowd and addressed the idea that Max Verstappen is a dirty driver:
“I don’t think Max is a dirty driver.” Said the Commentator
“I think at one stage he was, in the early part of his career overly aggressive at times, but I think he’s finessed that a little bit now.
“But what I do think the day we get Lewis and Max racing wheel to wheel again, and let’s face it, that was one hell of a season.
“When we get that, Max might just have changed his driving style just a little bit more because he knows how good Lewis is.
“Lewis is a seven-time World Champion, and he knows he’s got to get his elbows out just a little bit.
“And I think Lewis knows he’s got to get his elbows out a little bit, with Max as well. That’s why it’s proper box office.
“So, my real hope for this year is that we actually get a Mercedes car that’s a bit more on par with the Red Bull car.”
The member of the Sky Sports punditry team feels the biggest battle next year could be Oscar Piastri vs Lando Norris:
“Oscar is a sponge of a driver he soaks everything up. He learned in the hands of Fernando Alonso, he spent a year watching Fernando in the garage, and he’s soaked it all up and he’s used all of that experience.” Said Crofty.
“And had one of the best rookie seasons I think since Lewis Hamilton back in 2007 I’m a big fan of Oscar Piastri.
“I’m also a massive fan of Lando as well, and what I loved about Lando is he came into Formula 1 and everyone’s going George Russel, George Russel, he’s the man.
“And then Lando kinda came in, and he played second fiddle in F2 to George, but then he really showed what he could do.
“And has a great way of leading that McLaren team as well, for such a young driver, he’s a real leader behind the scenes,
“and it’s going to be one of the most fascinating battles in 2024 Oscar against Lando, and I don’t know what the answer is to who’s going to get the first Grand Prix win.”