Max Verstappen's Red Bull Future Uncertain: Christian Horner's Unexpected Admission

"If somebody didn't want to be at this team, then you know, we're not going to force somebody against their will to be here."

by Sead Dedovic
Max Verstappen's Red Bull Future Uncertain: Christian Horner's Unexpected Admission
© Clive Rose/Getty Images Sport

Rumors of Max Verstappen potentially joining Mercedes and leaving Red Bull didn't seem realistic to many. However, there is growing concern among Red Bull fans, especially after statements from Christian Horner, the Red Bull team principal. Despite Verstappen's dominant start to the season and consistent displays of his skill in previous seasons, there appears to be a chance of his departure. The race in Saudi Arabia confirmed the Dutchman's dominance as he finished the race in first place, with his teammate Sergio Perez coming in second. In a post-race media interview, Christian Horner emphasized that if someone doesn't want to be part of the team, they cannot force them to stay. Although he didn't directly mention Verstappen, his words suggest that the Dutchman is likely the person Horner is referring to.

"It's like anything in life, you can't force somebody to be somewhere just because of a piece of paper," Horner said, as quoted by

"If somebody didn't want to be at this team, then you know, we're not going to force somebody against their will to be here.

That applies whether it's a machine operator or a designer or somebody in one of the support functions, that runs through the business."

However, in the second part of the interview, it was hinted that Verstappen is probably thinking about leaving the team. Although the Dutchman is doing great things this season, it seems as if he is eager for a new challenge. Horner believes that Verstappen will be maximally committed and focused on doing great things for the rest of the season. His imperative is to win the championship one more time.

Max Verstappen, Christian Horner
Max Verstappen, Christian Horner© Mark Thompson / Getty Images

"Being involved in a team like this involves commitment and passion. And Max has that, we've seen that.

He's been here since he was 18 years of age. And I have no doubt of his commitment and passion going forward. But you know, that's pretty much the way it is. No individual is bigger than the team."- Horner continued.

The team principal talked about their really good car and an open spot for next year's team. He mentions that many drivers are eager to get that spot.  Red Bull is a team with arguably the best prospects for the future. Many drivers dream of being part of this team and achieving great results. Looking at the current situation in the F1 scene, there are several talented individuals expected to deliver their best. Red Bull can offer them excellent contracts and a strong foundation to achieve great results. However, it's still too early to talk about other options for Red Bull, especially concerning Max and a potential departure. Regarding Sergio Perez, the situation is somewhat different. The chances aren't very ideal for him to remain part of the team in the next season.

Christian Horner admits to having a good relationship with Max Verstappen

Horner also mentions their positive relationship with Max Verstappen and his great performance on the racetrack. They're focusing on how well he's doing in races. Their relationship has been good since the beginning of Verstappen's career at Red Bull. However, after the case involving Horner and the statements from Jos, questions arise about whether Horner and Max truly have an ideal relationship,

Finally, he says they listen to what Verstappen has to say, but the team will always make decisions that are best for the entire team. It is clear that the team is always above some individuals.

Horner is saying that he and Verstappen are getting along well. He highlights that Max works smoothly with the team, and there's no tension or stress. Verstappen seems comfortable around everyone, and this positive vibe shows in how well he's performing on the track. 

After such a fantastic start to the season for Red Bull, it's hard not to expect a positive atmosphere. On the other hand, Horner's situation and media pressure are reasons why there are assumptions about disagreements within the team. Despite all this, Red Bull is still functioning well. They remain strong contenders for winning the championship.

Even though there might be some outside noise, Horner assures that there are no issues with Max, and the whole team is still working together towards their goals.

We don't doubt that the future will reveal how sincere Horner's statements are, given the indications of certain disagreements. Things in the F1 scene can change quickly in a short period. The season is long, and this team doesn't need any conflicts, considering they have a good chance of repeating last year's success.

Max Verstappen Red Bull Christian Horner