Verstappen's new Red Bull role

Thursday, 31 january 2019, 08:10 , by Matthew Scott

Max Verstappen will take on the role of "senior driver" at Red Bull next year, with Pierre Gasly having been drafted into the team earlier than boss Christian Horner anticipated. Red Bull were pressed into hiring Gasly to the senior squad after Daniel Ricciardo's surprise switch to Renault.

Ricciardo had verbally agreed a one-year contract extension with Red Bull for 2019, with a video announcement even recorded with the Australian.

However, his desire for a new challenge prompted him to change his mind, leaving Red Bull to decide between Gasly and Carlos Sainz, who spent 2018 on loan at Renault.

Gasly was always the favourite for the seat and will indeed partner Verstappen this year, with the Frenchman perhaps not expected to be on his colleague's level immediately.

"I think Pierre is a very quick driver and it is up to us to give him a little bit of time to get up to speed," Horner told

"It [Gasly's Red Bull graduation] is faster than we would have originally liked to elevate him into the team, so Max will be very much taking on the role of the experienced senior driver and Pierre is going to have to go up against a very competitive teammate.

"It is not going to be easy. Of course it is not. But he knows what is expected of him.

"And in actual fact, for the team, it is a far easier scenario than it has been in previous years where we have got a clear difference between the experience in the two drivers and the expectations."

MORE: Gasly has 'no chance' of beating Verstappen
MORE: Red Bull wanted Hartley out from Monaco

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Comments (9)

  • Vincenzo Mascia
    Can not wait to see how he performs when positions and expectations are on the line..... in the past, nothing to lose so shoots out of the gate regardless of who is there and everyone else lets him go as they are afraid to crash.... This year, when it counts lol lets see what you can do lol
  • Gabriel Spacca
    Translation: We can stop pretending that we’re treating both drivers equally and openly admit Max is going to get preferential treatment this year.
  • Barbara Gouin
    Senior? what a laugh he acts like a spoilt child if things do not go his way
  • Moon Mack
    Hope Gasly proves you wrong ,that would be fun
  • Dave Freeman
    "experienced senior driver" lmao
  • Michael Swales
    Should be head of the Kindergarten
  • Dennis NL
    Who is Brat? I know he is spoilt
  • Dennis NL
    Who is Brat? I know he is spoilt

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