Max Verstappen plans talks to have Red Bull Ring named after him

Thomas Maher
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen on the podium at the Austrian Grand Prix. Spielberg, July 2023.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen on the podium at the Austrian Grand Prix. Spielberg, July 2023.

Max Verstappen says he’ll be contacting Red Bull management ‘one by one’ to have the Red Bull Ring renamed in his honour…

After joking about trying to get the Red Bull Ring renamed after himself if he achieved five wins around the venue, Max Verstappen has said he’ll be kicking off the process by calling up his Red Bull bosses.

The former Osterreichring had been named the A1-Ring when used as an F1 venue between 1997 and 2003, thanks to mobile phone provider A1 paying for the refurbishment that was carried out by Hermann Tilke. Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz then bought the circuit in 2004, and carried out extensive renovations before its reopening as the Red Bull Ring in 2011.

Max Verstappen aims to have circuit renamed in his honour

With the Red Bull Ring returning to the F1 calendar in 2014, Max Verstappen has become the hero for the local crowds. While Dutch fans swarm down to Spielberg to see their man race, Verstappen’s position as the lead driver for Red Bull, an Austrian company, means there’s only one driver the huge grandstands are cheering for.

In 2021, following on from his win at the Austrian Grand Prix, Verstappen joked: “If I win five times here, I’m gonna ask Dietrich [Mateschitz] to change the names to the Verstappen Ring!”

While the Dutch driver couldn’t deliver the win in 2022, he dominated the 2023 event to win both the Sprint race on Saturday before delivering the goods on Sunday to win the Grand Prix. With four Austrian Grand Prix wins and a win at the same circuit for the 2021 Styrian Grand Prix, Verstappen has thus won five races at the Red Bull Ring.

One plucky reporter reminded Verstappen of his vow after winning the race, with the two-time World Champion joking he’s now going to begin the process of calling up the relevant people at Red Bull to make it happen.

“Yeah, I have to talk to the bosses now. So let’s see!” he said.

“I’ll call them tomorrow, one by one.”

Unfortunately, Dietrich Mateschitz isn’t around to help Verstappen with his cause – the Austrian businessman passed away towards the end of 2022.

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Max Verstappen: It’s been an incredible weekend

Having dominated the race weekend to the extent where he pitted with two laps to go in order to attack the fastest lap point that was up for grabs, Verstappen said everything had gone as smoothly as he could have ever hoped for.

“It’s been a pretty incredible weekend, of course, something I didn’t expect,” he said.

“But with the Sprint format, normally, it’s always a bit more chaotic to get on top of everything. But I think we did everything well as a team.

“Also today, I think with the strategy, with the pit stops, everything was smooth. And out there on the track we just had a very quick car and I felt comfortable in the car. And we could do everything we wanted, like we planned it.”

Asked about the fact his rivals weren’t as near to him as they had been in Montreal two weeks ago, Verstappen smiled.

“Exactly. But I loved all the articles about it!” he laughed.

“Yeah, I mean, some weekends they work a bit better for you and some don’t. And for me, Montreal wasn’t that fantastic in the race, from our side. And here, I think we did a really good job and then naturally the gap is a bit bigger.”

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