“You only pull a contract out of a drawer when you’ve got a problem” – Red Bull F1 boss Christian Horner admits Max Verstappen could join Mercedes in 2022 in case Lewis Hamilton calls it quits.
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has dropped a bomb by suggesting Max Verstappen could join Mercedes in 2022. If this happens, it will most likely be to replace Lewis Hamilton, the reigning champion. Alternatively, we could see the explosive fantasy partnership of Verstappen-Hamilton, in case Valtteri Bottas is shown the door.
“I’m sure that should Lewis decide to stop then Max would naturally be the driver at the top of the list. But they also have George Russell, they’ve also got other drivers obviously available to them on.”
“All drivers have safeguards within performance and the reality is that yes, of course, as there has always been, there is an element of performance-related to Max’s contract. I’m not going to go into what that is. It doesn’t relate to the power unit in any way, it’s just a binary performance at a certain measurement in time.
“As with all these things to force a driver that doesn’t want to be there… it’s more about relationships than contracts, and you only pull a contract out of a drawer when you’ve got a problem, in my experience.”
— Formula 1 (@F1) February 15, 2021
Christian Horner counting on 2022 for Red Bull comeback
Horner has pretty much given up on this season after Lewis Hamilton signed the contract extension. But with 2022 bringing in new regs, there would be a shake-up in the title order. Apart from Mercedes and Red Bull, Ferrari, Alpine, Aston Martin, and McLaren are expected to compete for the elusive title.
“There are no guarantees for 2022. It’s a completely clean sheet of paper. If there’s going to be a significant mix-up of the order, one would assume it’s going to be with that big regulation change.”