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Marko reveals why Verstappen would NEVER join Mercedes

Marko reveals why Verstappen would NEVER join Mercedes

Marko reveals why Verstappen would NEVER join Mercedes

GPFans Staff
Marko reveals why Verstappen would NEVER join Mercedes

Helmut Marko has stated the events of the 2021 Formula 1 season will deter Max Verstappen from ever driving for Mercedes.

Verstappen has a contract with Red Bull until 2028 and has enjoyed a stellar relationship with the Austrian-British team, winning three world championships and 54 grands prix.

The Dutchman’s 2023 season was one of the most successful in F1 history, winning 19 of the season’s 22 races and securing the title at October’s Qatar Grand Prix.

READ MORE: Geri Horner 'unfollows' Verstappen amid Red Bull internal investigation

READ MORE: F1 Testing Results: Verstappen sets the pace on HECTIC first day

It marks a stark contrast to his first world championship, where Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton slugged it out for the 2021 driver's title, which was decided on the last lap in Abu Dhabi in favour of the Dutchman.

Helmut Marko has been running the Red Bull driver development programme since 1999
Marko has been an advisor to Red Bull since they first entered Formula 1 in 2005
Max Verstappen has been a Red Bull-backed driver since 2014

Wolff must do what he can to get the best drivers

During the winter of 2024, Hamilton stunned the F1 world by announcing he would leave Mercedes at season's end to join Ferrari in 2025.

Hamilton’s departure means Mercedes boss Toto Wolff will need a new driver for 2025. The early contenders for the seven-time world champion’s vacant seat include Carlos Sainz, Alex Albon, Fernando Alonso, and highly-rated Mercedes junior Andrea Kimi Antonelli. “That's actually his job as team boss,” Marko told Austrian reporters when asked about Wolff’s predicament in signing Hamilton’s replacement. “He must do everything he can to get the best drivers.”

However, despite Wolff’s previous admiration for Verstappen, Marko believes the memories of 2021 will stop the Dutchman from jumping ship to Red Bull’s bitter rivals.

“No. He [Verstappen] has a good memory,” explained Marko. “Too much has happened in the past. I remember Silverstone [ the contact Hamilton and Verstappen had on Lap 1 in 2021] and the turmoil at the finale in Abu Dhabi. It runs too deep. I would rule that out.”

Marko then savagely replied to Wolff’s previous claim that a piece of paper couldn’t fit between him and Hamilton because the pair had such a close relationship. "A Ferrari contract did,” the Austrian laughed.

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: F1 star pegs REASON for drain cover issues during testing

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