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Why Fernando Alonso is right about Max Verstappen

The likelihood of Max Verstappen replacing Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes looks slim

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The rumour mill has been steadily churning throughout the 2024 Formula 1 season, with the spotlight shining on Max Verstappen and the future of his F1 career.

There has been ongoing speculation as to whether Verstappen would remain with Red Bull until the end of his lengthy contract with the team. 

But as this speculation persists, Fernando Alonso has expressed his belief that the chances of Verstappen departing the Austrian team are slim to none.

“I don’t think there’s any chance of that happening,” Alonso told the press when discussing the possibility of Verstappen leaving Red Bull for Mercedes.

“I’ve pulled on intuition. I don’t know, that’s my feeling.”

But Alonso could be right, as new updates suggest that a lack of competitive alternatives means Verstappen is reluctant to leave Red Bull — despite his discontent with Christian Horner.

Verstappen willing to put up with Horner

The idea that Verstappen could leave Red Bull was spurred on by comments from his father, Jos Verstappen, following allegation of misconduct made against team principal Christian Horner.

But, a source close to Max Verstappen has shared that the 26-year-old is willing to put up with Horner‘s presence in the team, so long as Red Bull continues to deliver a competitive car.

Although there had been plenty of talk about a potential move for Verstappen from Red Bull to Mercedes, reports now suggest that Verstappen views Mercedes as an unattractive option, following the team’s lacklustre performance so far this season.

Red Bull is Verstappen’s only option

Whilst Verstappen has enjoyed three victories out of four races, Mercedes are yet to finish any higher than fifth. The Dutchman has three consecutive World Championships under his belt, and looks on course to win a fourth with Red Bull this year. A departure to Mercedes would likely see Verstappen bid this spell of dominance farewell.

The only other teams that could pose a substantial threat to Red Bull in the coming years are McLaren and Ferrari — both of which have confirmed their driver lineup for the foreseeable future.

Although there will be plenty of movement in the driver market at the end of the 2024 season, with numerous driver contracts up for renewal, no team is as attractive as Red Bull.

Jasmine Hughes
Jasmine Hughes
Experienced in digital content creation, Jasmine Hughes has written for a number of online publications, joining Total Motorsport in 2024. She previously served as FormulaNerds' Formula E Editor, leading coverage of the 2023 Formula E season. She has been watching Formula 1 since the age of 4, after falling in love with Fernando Alonso's blue-yellow Renault R25.
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