Ferrari urged to hand ‘blank cheque’ to Max Verstappen for his ‘three-tenth’ advantage

Michelle Foster
Max Verstappen lowers his helmeted head after winning in Saudi Arabia with a prominent Ferrari logo alongside him

Max Verstappen to Ferrari?

Ferrari have again been urged to hand Max Verstappen a “blank cheque” because the “three-tenths” he brings to the track are priceless.

Although Verstappen lost his first race of this season in Australia, Carlos Sainz taking the chequered flag for Ferrari, it was the Dutchman’s RB20 that cost him a shot at the win with a brake fire putting him out of the race.

Ferrari told it costs more money to find ‘three-tenths in the car’

That put paid to his chances of a second 10-race winning streak with his charge halted on nine extending back to last year’s Japanese Grand Prix.

But with the Dutchman still very much the driver to beat, both in qualifying and the Grands Prix, Dutch racing driver Tom Coronel has urged Ferrari to give Verstappen and his management a blank cheque to sign.

“The only thing [Fred] Vasseur has to do to be disruptive and to be better known and bigger than the Pope is to send a blank cheque to [Verstappen’s manager] Raymond Vermeulen,” Coronel said.

“Just blank. ‘You fill it in, but he drives for me.'”

His fellow Viaplay analyst Kees van de Grint agrees, saying Verstappen will bring to the table the three-tenths Ferrari need to beat Red Bull.

“It’s never too expensive,” he said. “Three-tenths, it costs so much money to find three-tenths in the car. No matter which other driver you take, you always have that handicap.

“They [Red Bull] always have that advantage. They always put down those two or three-tenths.”

“Those three-tenths, you just have them when you have a Max,” added Coronel.

Coronel and van de Grint’s comments come at a time when Ferrari could lose out on the possibility of ever signing Verstappen with the 26-year-old linked to Mercedes.

Amidst Red Bull’s behind-the-scenes unrest, it has been suggested Verstappen could seek pastures new with Mercedes openly courting him. recommends

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The F1 2024 Drivers’ Championship standings without Max Verstappen

Giedo van der Garde: Max Verstappen is ‘not going’ to Ferrari

However, former F1 driver Giedo van der Garde says Verstappen to Ferrari is not happening. After all, they’ve already signed Lewis Hamilton.

Earlier this year Ferrari announced they’d signed Hamilton for the 2025 season with the seven-time World Champion partnering Charles Leclerc having signed a multi-year deal.

Van der Garde does not believe Hamilton and Verstappen would make a good line-up and named Mercedes as the triple World Champion’s best option should he leave Red Bull.

“He’s not going,” he told DRS: The Race Show podcast. “You have Leclerc and Hamilton, so that is impossible.

“Verstappen and Hamilton at Ferrari would be horrible, but Wolff will do everything he can to get Verstappen. Max is someone with good know-how of the team.

As for concerns Ferrari have made the wrong call dropping Australian GP winner Sainz in favour of Hamilton, van der Garde weighed in on that.

“I don’t think Hamilton is burning it down. He was defeated three times [not winning the title in ’21, ’22 and ’23] and of course he looks at Ferrari with two, or even three, eyes,” he said. “He always performed at Melbourne and now he is out. That guy thinks: what am I doing here, man.”

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