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Horner admits Verstappen Red Bull EXIT possibility

Horner admits Verstappen Red Bull EXIT possibility

Horner admits Verstappen Red Bull EXIT possibility

Horner admits Verstappen Red Bull EXIT possibility

Christian Horner has admitted that there is no way to force Max Verstappen to stay at Red Bull, if he decides that he wants to leave the team.

The three-time world champion has been with the Milton Keynes-based outfit for eight years, since a sudden promotion from Toro Rosso to replace Daniil Kvyat.

READ MORE: Sky Sports F1 pundit tips KEY Red Bull figure to join Hamilton at Ferrari

He’s currently dominating Formula 1, having taken victory in 19 of the last 20 races, and is working in perfect harmony with a well-oiled Red Bull operation.

But amid an investigation into alleged ‘inappropriate behaviour’ from team boss and CEO Christian Horner, and suggestions of a Helmut Marko departure, rumours that Verstappen could join Mercedes began to swirl around the paddock.

READ MORE: Marko casts HUGE Mercedes move verdict after Wolff offer

Christian Horner has led Red Bull since 2005
Max Verstappen has won three titles at Red Bull

Horner realistic on Verstappen Red Bull future

Horner, who was cleared of any wrongdoing in the matter, has now revealed that he is not going to force anyone within the team to stay with them if they don’t want to be there.

“It’s like anything in life, you can’t force somebody to be somewhere just because of a piece of paper,” he told media after the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: F1 champion insists Red Bull NOT responsible for 2023 success

Helmut Marko helps to oversee Red Bull's talent pool

“If somebody didn’t want to be at this team, then we’re not going to force somebody against their will to be here.

“And that applies whether it’s a machine operator or a designer or somebody in one of the support functions. That runs through the business,” Horner continued.

“Being involved in a team like this involves commitment and passion. And Max has that. We’ve seen that.

“He’s been here since he was 18 years of age. And I have no doubt of his commitment and passion going forward. But that’s the way it is.”

For now, it seems as though any Verstappen move is off the cards, after Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko affirmed his commitment to the team following a meeting with Red Bull GmbH managing director Oliver Mintzlaff.

Their attention will now turn to the Australian GP in two weeks' time, as they attempt to take three consecutive one-two finishes to open the Formula 1 season.

READ MORE: Wolff admits SHOCK Verstappen Mercedes swoop rests on crucial move

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