Sebastian Vettel’s warning to Max Verstappen amidst Red Bull’s ‘unrest’ and Mercedes rumours

Michelle Foster
Max Verstappen looks deep in thought in a press conference with a prominent Red Bull logo alongside him

Could Max Verstappen have a decision to make on his F1 future in light of the Red Bull saga?

Although acknowledging the “unrest” at Red Bull, Sebastian Vettel says Max Verstappen has “no reason” from a sporting perspective to leave the team amidst rumours he’s Mercedes-bound.

Two months ago it was unimaginable to even think that triple World Champion Verstappen could leave Red Bull four years before the end of his contract, but that’s the rumour that won’t die down.

Sebastian Vettel sees ‘no sporting reason’ for Max Verstappen to leave Red Bull

While Red Bull’s on-track form has shown little sign of slowing down with Verstappen winning two of the opening three races, the team’s off-track drama has been what has dominated headlines.

Thrown into turmoil as news broke that team boss Christian Horner was being investigated for alleged inappropriate behaviour, almost eight weeks on the situation is far from over despite the team being at pains to at least publicly move on.

And it’s led to speculation Verstappen could walk away from the team, those rumours fuelled by his father Jos Verstappen calling for Horner to step down.

Mercedes have weighed in, Toto Wolff publicly courting the triple World Champion and saying Verstappen to Mercedes is a “relationship that needs to happen at a certain stage”.

But given the deficit between Red Bull and Mercedes both on the track and in the standings where it stands at 97 points to 26, Red Bull’s first World Champion Vettel sees no reason for Verstappen to leave Red Bull.

“There is of course a lot of unrest at the moment, but I think from a sporting perspective there is currently no reason for him to think about anything else,” the four-time World Champion said in an interview with sport.de.

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Sebastian Vettel weighs in on Lewis Hamilton’s ‘difficult’ Ferrari decision

The German, who quit Formula 1 at the end of the 2022 season, also shared his thoughts on Lewis Hamilton’s decision to leave Mercedes for Ferrari, that of course opening the door for Verstappen to join the Brackley squad.

Revealing he initially thought the reports were nothing but stories, he wrote to Hamilton to congratulate him once it was confirmed.

“I thought that somehow another report would come from ‘I don’t know where’, but then it was confirmed,” he said. “I then wrote to him straight away and congratulated him.”

Vettel, who also left a team with whom he’d won World titles to join Ferrari, accepts it was a “very, very difficult decision” for Hamilton to make.

“Of course, like many others, I was surprised because of the connection he had with Mercedes over the years.”

But, he added, he understands “the urge or the will to maybe try something different.”

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