Max Verstappen, three-time Formula 1 World Champion, was refused his chosen rental car when he arrived at Faro airport earlier this month.
According to a report by The Sun, the 26-year-old champion tried to hire a Mercedes AMG GT, from rent-a-car company Sixt at Faro airport in the Algarve.
He was refused the vehicle because you need to be 30 years old to hire the car in question.
The Sun reported: “When they got to the airport, Max was shocked when he was told he wasn’t allowed to drive the Mercedes he wanted.
“He’s a seasoned F1 driver who’s used to handling powerful cars, so it’s quite astonishing to think he wasn’t allowed to get behind the wheel of this one — but those are the rules, so he abided by them.”
Contacted by the British newspaper, the Sixt clarified that: “The employees of our franchise partner in Portugal have only followed the rules that arise for insurance reasons.
“In order to find a customer-friendly solution on site, Mr Verstappen was provided with another premium vehicle.
“However, there can be special circumstances that justify a deviation from rules. This is such a case.
“We apologise to Mr. Verstappen. He can rent the car he wants from us at any time.
“There is of course no doubt at all about his driving skills and his experience with powerful cars.”
The three-time Formula 1 world champion was in the Algarve, at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve (AIA), to drive a Verstappen.com Racing Ferrari 296 GT3, in a test session that began on December 19th