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Red Bull chief accuses Wolff of DISRESPECTFUL Verstappen poaching

Red Bull chief accuses Wolff of DISRESPECTFUL Verstappen poaching

Red Bull chief accuses Wolff of DISRESPECTFUL Verstappen poaching

Red Bull chief accuses Wolff of DISRESPECTFUL Verstappen poaching

Red Bull's Oliver Mintzlaff has slammed Mercedes and Toto Wolff for their public pursuit of Max Verstappen.

The news cycle in Formula 1 hasn't had a moment's rest since the bombshell news of Lewis Hamilton's move to Ferrari for the 2025 season.

READ MORE: Ricciardo tipped to be REPLACED before next race

With the seven-time champion vacating his seat at Mercedes, the Silver Arrows have been desperately searching for a suitable replacement.

Inevitably, the team's gaze has fallen upon the reigning champion, Verstappen, who is on a quest to win his fourth consecutive drivers' championship and is looking to bring his team a third constructors' title in a row.

However, securing the Dutchman's services won't be a walk in the park. While Red Bull have undoubtedly been hit hard by the departure of design genius Adrian Newey, and rumours of other key figures leaving the team amidst controversies surrounding Christian Horner, Verstappen himself has recently expressed full confidence in the team's future.

Furthermore, the regulation changes that have thrown Mercedes on the back foot since 2022 wouldn't exactly entice the three-time champion to jump ship.

This hasn't deterred team boss Wolff, however, who seems intent on luring the Dutchman away from Red Bull.

READ MORE: Marko takes thinly-veiled swipe at Newey following Red Bull exit

Max Verstappen is in quest to win a fourth consecutive drivers' title
Toto Wolff admitted that Max Verstappen is his ideal Lewis Hamilton replacement

Mintzlaff hits out at Wolff

Red Bull's managing director Mintzlaff has not taken kindly to Mercedes' pursuit of Verstappen, slamming Wolff for 'publicly flirting' with the three-time champion.

Acknowledging the pressure Wolff faces after years of trailing Red Bull, Mintzlaff emphasised that the Mercedes boss should focus on his own team's issues.

"I understand the pressure that Toto Wolff and perhaps other teams have after years of being behind," he told BILD.

"But I think Toto Wolff should concentrate on his challenges. He has enough of those.

"And it also has something to do with respect. If I keep talking about the personnel of other teams, that's not right."

Max Verstappen's contract with Red Bull expires at the end of 2028

With Verstappen locked into the longest contract on the grid, Mintzlaff expressed full confidence that the Dutchman would see out his deal.

"[Verstappen] is a thoroughbred racer and wants to win every race, every qualifying, and every training session. This connects us. It's in his and our DNA. And he finds the perfect conditions for this with us. We have created a unique setup, built the best car in Formula 1.

"Max still has a long-term contract here and hasn't said a word that he doesn't want to fulfil it.

"I'm not at all worried that he's considering a move. Things just have to calm down again now. That’s what Max wants – and that’s what we want too. You also need that, if you want to be successful in the long term in sport, whether in football or Formula 1."

When pressed on whether he could see any reason why Verstappen would leave Red Bull, Mintzlaff was unequivocal.

"No. At least I can't think of any," the Red Bull boss explained.

"Max wants the fastest car. We have this. Max wants to become world champion. With us, he has the best chances.

"And Max is a loyal guy. He knows that Christian Horner and Helmut Marko have always placed their trust in him. He appreciates that.

"In addition, Red Bull is simply a great brand that he can extremely identify with. So there are many reasons for staying – and none against."

READ MORE: Red Bull chief 'considering F1 future'

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