Marko begins contract extension talks with Verstappen after world championship triumph

Helmut Marko opened contract talks with Max Verstappen, with an extension the route desired if it happens.

Verstappen made history for Red Bull by becoming the first driver to become world champion since Sebastian Vettel did it four times from 2010 to 2014. It was a great moment for the Milton-Keynes outfit, whose faith in the young Dutchman paid off big time.

With Verstappen under contract with Red Bull until 2023, time is running out to tie him down to a long-term deal. In a year’s time, he can start talking to other teams to join them, something Red Bull will try their best to prevent.

Marko therefore opened contract talks with Verstappen, and revealed that they will pull out all the stops to tie down the champion to a long-term deal. He revealed that he is set to meet Raymond Vermeulen, the driver’s manager, to discuss and negotiate the details.

“(We will) discuss and perhaps complete an extension,” he said, as quoted by “Let’s see.”

The 78-year-old also compared Verstappen to Ayrton Senna, and insisted that he was on the level of the legendary Brazilian daredevil.

Max Verstappen wins season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - Go Zip Zap Zoom
Verstappen (pictured) was the victor in 2021. Source:

“(Max is) the fastest, most consistent and most aggressive driver we have ever had,” he said.

“These two drivers are similar in their mentality, their personality and their aggressiveness, which we are very happy about.”

Long-term relationship

Verstappen was jubilant after his triumph in Abu Dhabi. In his excitement, he told his team on the radio, “Can we do this together for another 10, 15 years?”

Speaking at the prizegiving ceremony in Paris, Red Bull boss Christian Horner joked, “I have the 15-year contract here with me.

“At the end of the day, it’s not about contracts, it’s about relationships.

“He came to us as a boy and now he’s a young man. I think the relationship we have is better than just a piece of paper.”

Read more: Marko criticises Mercedes for being unable to cope with the repercussions of their own political game

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