New option for Max Verstappen? Fresh twist as Fernando Alonso remarks trigger stunning admission

Oliver Harden
Max Verstappen looking unimpressed in the press conference at Suzuka with prominent Red Bull and Mercedes logos alongside him

Red Bull, Mercedes or the third way? A new option for 2025 is on the table for Max Verstappen

Max Verstappen has responded to Fernando Alonso’s assertion that there is “zero chance” he will leave Red Bull at the end of 2024, claiming he has not yet decided if he even wants to race in F1 2025.

Despite holding a contract with Red Bull until the end of the 2028 season, Verstappen has been linked with a sensational move to Mercedes for 2025 as a result of the off-track drama currently engulfing the reigning Constructors’ Champions.

Max Verstappen to sit out F1 2025 in fresh Red Bull future twist?

Verstappen’s father Jos called for Christian Horner to resign from his position after last month’s season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, accusing the long-serving team principal of “playing the victim when he is the one causing the problems” after an investigation into Horner’s conduct was dismissed.

Amid concerns that the saga could persuade Verstappen to replace Ferrari-bound Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes, Horner argued a week later in Saudi Arabia that “nobody is bigger than the team.”

With his current Aston Martin contract expiring at the end of 2024, Alonso is said to be monitoring Verstappen’s situation with interest, with reports this week claiming the two-time World Champion is “pushing very hard” to join Red Bull next season.

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Ahead of this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix, Alonso was adamant that Verstappen will be staying put – but teased that a surprise Red Bull exit could have “an impact” on his own plans for 2025.

Appearing in the drivers’ press conference at Suzuka, Verstappen appeared to suggest he is uncertain about whether he will even be on the grid next season.

Asked if Alonso’s comments are accurate, Verstappen said: “No, it all depends on if I want to also drive next year or not.

“But from my side, no, I’m very happy where I’m at. And we want to keep it that way.”

With Red Bull’s current engine partner Honda set to join forces with Aston Martin in 2026, the Silverstone-based team have been mentioned as outsiders to sign Verstappen, with reports last week indicating Red Bull design guru Adrian Newey has received a lucrative offer to join Aston Martin,

Asked if he could reunite with Honda at Aston Martin in the future, Verstappen said: “I don’t know.

“It doesn’t mean necessarily ‘26 or whatever, right?

“I have a contract with Red Bull until ‘28. After that, I first want to see if I actually even want to continue. That’s for me the most important. It’s not so much about where.

“So these kind of things I don’t really think about at the moment.”

Read next: Adrian Newey reports: A test of Red Bull strength or another show of Aston Martin ambition?