Max Verstappen Mercedes rumours put to bed as Red Bull rejoice

Since Lewis Hamilton announced his decision to leave Mercedes, Verstappen has been linked to the Silver Arrows as a replacement

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Max Verstappen has finally put an end to rumours linking him with the vacant seat at Mercedes after confirming he will be driving with Red Bull for the Formula 1 2025 season.

The Dutchman had been linked with a shock move to join the Silver Arrows to replace his former championship rival Lewis Hamilton, who is heading to Ferrari. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has made no secret of his desire to sign Verstappen, who has won three consecutive drivers’ titles and is on course to make it four in a row.

However, Verstappen – under contract with the Austrian team until 2028 – has given an assurance to Red Bull that he will be staying with the team, irregardless of their ability to challenge for titles.

Verstappen Mercedes rumours put to bed

Asked if he would leave if Red Bull are no longer the quickest on the grid, Verstappen told the written press at the Red Bull Ring, including Total-Motorsport.com: “I don’t think that’s how Formula 1 works where suddenly you can say ‘well, bye guys!’. It’s not how F1 works.

Verstappen added: “I’ve got a long contract with the team, I’m very happy with where I’m at and like I said before, we are focusing on things next year that we can implement on the car. That should say enough for where I’m driving next year.”

Max Verstappen during the 2024 Monaco GP press conference | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool
Max Verstappen confirmed he is staying at Red Bull for 2025 | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

It remains to be seen if Verstappen could decide to break his contract in time for the new engine regulations, especially as he said “next year”.

But any imminent concerns over a move to the Silver Arrows looks to have passed, with 17-year-old Andrea Kimi Antonelli tipped to take the seat at Mercedes alongside George Russell.

Red Bull handed massive boost

It marks a huge shift in the 26-year-old’s position in February, where he suggested he could leave the team amid tension between Christian Horner, Helmut Marko and his father Jos Verstappen.

Horner was told to step down as team principal after the team were forced to investigate allegations of ‘inappropriate behaviour’ against a female Red Bull employee. Horner was later cleared by an independent investigation, but the animosity between himself and Verstappen Sr could well reignite in the future.

Red Bull have also lost their chief technical officer Adrian Newey and shuffled around their design team ahead of the crucial 2026 regulations.

But it seems they will not have to worry about changing their driver lineup, with Verstappen committing his future for now and Sergio Perez tied down for at least the next two years.

Through the dark moments, Verstappen has demonstrated his ability to lead the team during difficult periods, especially in 2024 when they have been caught by Ferrari and McLaren in the development race. He has won seven out of 10 races this season and leads Lando Norris in the drivers’ championship by 63 points.

Joe Krishnan
Joe Krishnan
Joe Krishnan is an NCTJ-qualified journalist who has worked for a number of media organisations, including the Daily Express, The Mirror, Evening Standard, The Independent and Bleacher Report. Joe has been following F1 since when he watched Mika Hakkinen clinch the 1999 drivers' championship, and his first taste of real-life racing action was watching David Coulthard spin off into the gravel at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in 2001.
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