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Formula 1 Austrian GP

Verstappen: I will be driving for Red Bull in F1 2025

The Formula 1 world champion gives clearest answer yet on his future with Red Bull, following the shock early-2024 instability at the team over its management situation

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

Max Verstappen has insisted he will race for Red Bull in Formula 1 2025 in an exchange with reporters over his vague answers on committing to the team in Austria.

The development follows the shock possibility that emerged at the Jeddah round that Verstappen could leave the Red Bull team where he has won his three world titles, taken 61 grand prix victories and has a contract to race until the end of the 2028 campaign.

That situation arose amid Red Bull’s early 2024 management war – which followed the investigation into team principal Christian Horner’s behaviour towards a female employee – and how Verstappen strongly backed Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko.

Although the chances of Verstappen choosing to leave have faded significantly since the Jeddah event, particularly after Marko resolved his immediate future with Red Bull CEO Oliver Mintzlaff, there has since been much interest into Mercedes’ subsequent efforts to entice him away from Red Bull.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff even went as far as to say “it’s a kind of a relationship that needs to happen at a certain stage” at the subsequent Australian event, with the situation again being discussed in media sessions involving Wolff and Horner at last weekend’s Spanish GP.

Specifically, Wolff said there were “no talks that are taking place at this stage – because I think we need to look on ourselves and on improving the car”.

But this followed Mercedes-Benz CEO Ola Kallenius telling Sky Germany that there was “an opportunity” to sign Verstappen amid F1’s 2026 engine rule changes and that he thought the Dutchman “would look good in silver”.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, 1st position, celebrates in Parc Ferme

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, 1st position, celebrates in Parc Ferme

Photo by: Andrew Ferraro / Motorsport Images

In his appearance in the pre-event press conference at the Red Bull Ring, Verstappen was asked, considering the headlines arising from such comments, would he be prepared to end the situation by saying he would 100% be racing for Red Bull in 2025?

“I think I’ve said this before,” Verstappen replied. “I mean naturally of course people are talking, but it’s most important just that we have a very competitive car for the future.

“At the moment of course it’s very tight, but we are working very well as a team to try and improve more.

“And for sure, I said this already with the team, we’re working and focusing on next year to try and be competitive again.”

Verstappen was then asked if he could yet decide to abandon Red Bull if it became clear to him the team would not have F1’s best car in 2025, following McLaren’s strong showings in recent races.

“I don’t think that’s how Formula 1 works – where then suddenly you can say, ‘well, bye guys’. It’s not how it works,” Verstappen responded.

“I have a long contract with the team, I’m very happy where I’m at and, like I said before, we’re focusing also already on next year with things we can implement on the car.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB20, George Russell, Mercedes F1 W15, Lando Norris, McLaren MCL38

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB20, George Russell, Mercedes F1 W15, Lando Norris, McLaren MCL38

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

“So, I guess that should say enough of where I’m driving next year.”

Autosport then pressed Verstappen to provide a clear ‘yes or no’ answer on whether he would indeed be racing at Red Bull in 2025, after he had taken two opportunities to do so and apparently declined.

The exchange went as follows:

Autosport: “We’ve danced around the subject a little bit today, if I could just say to you, a simple ‘yes or no’, will you be driving for Red Bull next year please?”

Verstappen: “You didn’t get that out of my answer before?”

Autosport: “You could say it?”

Verstappen: “OK, yes. And that’s what I said – we’re already working on next year’s car. I think when you’re very focused on that it means that you’re also driving for the team.”

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Although Verstappen’s answer provides the clearest response yet on how he currently sees his future at Red Bull, it does not stop him trying to force an exit before his contract ends in 2028 if he so desires in the future.

It is understood that the remote chance of Verstappen potentially choosing to do so is why Mercedes is yet to announce Andrea Kimi Antonelli as Lewis Hamilton’s replacement for 2025.

Additional reporting by Ben Hunt

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