Verstappen wary of Dutch GP burnout but is excited about 'special' Zandvoort

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Max Verstappen admits he is wary of overloading his Dutch Grand Prix schedule after christening the revamped Zandvoort circuit.

The Red Bull driver took the 2012 V8-powered RB8 for a spin on the altered design on Wednesday, with just under two months to go until the race itself on May 3.

Of course, if it wasn't for the huge popularity of Verstappen in Holland, the race, which hasn't been held since 1985, likely wouldn't be happening at all.

And after Daniel Ricciardo admitted falling out of love with his home race in Australia due to the extra attention, the 22-year-old is hoping to avoid the same fate.

“I definitely don’t want to be in that situation," he told RTL. “Ultimately I’m there to perform, that’s the most important thing.

“It will be a great weekend, but [fans] must also understand what I have to do all weekend to have a great weekend.”

Still, that hasn't stopped Max from being the poster boy of the race, and it was fitting that he should be the first man to tackle Zandvoort's new banked corners in an F1 car.

“All in all, it was very special," he said of the honour.

"I liked it very much. In particular Turn 3 and the last turn, that banking feels very special and there are many different lines that you can take in the turn. Really interesting.

“In general, it makes me very proud to drive here, I am really looking forward to the race in Zandvoort. I see the enthusiasm of my fans on the other circuits and it can only get better during the Dutch Grand Prix.”

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More broadly, expectations are high that Verstappen can take the fight to Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton in 2020 but Max played down the lack of success until now.

"You always just have to be realistic. We just didn't have the chance yet to fight for the title so you cannot force it or whatever," he told Sky Sports.

"We are just pushing as a team to try and make it happen. Of course, I would like to win the title every single year but as a team, of course, we have to step it up a bit. I'm pretty confident about this year that we can do a really good job."