Red Bull F1 Signs Max Verstappen Through 2020
The youngest Grand Prix winner in history will stay put after all.
After speculation that he could be on the move after 2017, Max Verstappen has extended his relationship with Red Bull F1 through 2020. The Dutchman became the youngest driver to start a race in Grand Prix history with the team at just 17 years and 166 days, having continued on since and notching two victories in 2016 and 2017. His new contract will secure his spot on the team through what is expected to be a record-breaking free agency period in 2019, leaving only one driver position to be filled by Red Bull before then.
Team boss Christian Horner is admittedly excited to have the 20-year-old on board for the next three seasons. He stated earlier in the year that Red Bull would not let Verstappen go "for any price", and it seems as if he has followed through with that promise although no exact financial figures have been announced. Horner claimed in a release:
“We are delighted that Max has agreed to extend his contract with Red Bull Racing. We had a phenomenal start together in Spain last year and Max has only pushed on from there. It was a great moment for the whole team to see him put the frustrations of this season behind him in taking that fantastic victory in Malaysia last month."
He then went on to say that Verstappen is a "pure racer" and complimented him on his maturity and work ethic at such a young age.
Verstappen himself announced his enthusiasm to stay with the team past this year.
“Red Bull has always shown their faith and belief in me with actions; inviting me in to the young driver programme as a 16-year-old, then giving me my start in Formula One when I was just 17, and then the opportunity to race with Red Bull Racing where I had such a dream start with this team," Max said. "They have always backed me and my ambition and I know we share that ambition. Their support, from the guys and girls in the factory through to the crew in the garage, no matter what plays out on the race track, has always been 100 percent. We’ve also had some fun times! I’m very happy to commit further to Red Bull Racing and I’m looking forward to working together to enjoy more success in the years to come.”
Red Bull and Verstappen look to capitalize on recent success at this weekend's USA Grand Prix. He is coming off of a win at the final Malaysian GP as well as a podium finish at Japan, so look for Verstappen to improve on his best finish of fourth place in Austin on Sunday.