Former Formula 1 driver, Mika Salo, thinks Max Verstappen’s new Red Bull deal does not change the 2021 driver market very much.
A quarter of the F1 2021 grid is already in place following Verstappen’s new three-year contract extension, suggesting that the traditional ‘silly season’ may not go on to live up to the hype.
Salo feels that there was always a good chance Verstappen would stay with Red Bull and there is still a lot of potential for a grid shake-up with the likes of Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo all still out of contract at the end of 2020.
“It really doesn’t change anything,” Salo is quoted as having told Finnish outlet C More. “It was quite expected that Max would stay there.
“Everything else is still open. Pretty much everyone else’s contract is ending.
Salo also believes it was crucial that Red Bull were able to tie Verstappen down to a new deal, saying that they “need” him as opposed to just wanting him to stay.
“They need Max,” Salo added. “Red Bull has been able to guarantee Verstappen good money and a good car.
“I think the situation is satisfactory to Max. Now he can concentrate on the season.”