SHANGHAI, CHINA - APRIL 09: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing talks with Red Bull Racing Team Consultant Dr Helmut Marko on the grid before the Formula One Grand Prix of China at Shanghai International Circuit on April 9, 2017 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // P-20170409-00432 // Usage for editorial use only // Please go to www.redbullcontentpool.com for further information. //

Max Verstappen has warned Red Bull over throwing away their chances at the world title sooner than expected.

For many teams, this season is almost over. They will already be looking forward to the next one, and will be diverting their resources to that side. Verstappen, however, feels that maximum effort should be put in for 2021. The Dutchman urged his team to give it their all and not throw their lead and chance away.

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Max Verstappen (pictured) has urged his team to remain focused. Source: beyondtheflag.com

Both Red Bull and Verstappen sit on top of their respective championship tables. Red Bull is at the top of the constructor’s table with 178 points, while Verstappen is ahead of Lewis Hamilton by four points.

Speaking about the season and efforts put into it, Verstappen said, “My opinion? As long as we have a good chance of winning the title, we shouldn’t let up.

“It is of course difficult to say, ‘This year is tricky, but we can win next year’. You just don’t know. As long as the chance of the world title is so great, we have to stay on the ball. It would be stupid to throw something away now just to look to next year.

“Who gives you the guarantee that we will win next year if we now fully concentrate on the new car?” he concluded.

Intense rivalry

Red Bull have more momentum than Mercedes at the moment. 50% of the races so far have been won by Verstappen’s team. The past two races have been crucial in building said momentum, with Red Bull winning both and Mercedes suffering terrible results.

In Monaco, Verstappen clinched victory, while Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas suffered a P7 and a DNF respectively. The next race in Baku saw Verstappen fail to finish, but Sergio Perez won the race for Red Bull. Their happiness compounded when Hamilton and Bottas finished P15 and P12 respectively.

With F1 heading to France next, Mercedes will have Red Bull in their crosshairs. Will the latter keep the eye on the ball? Or will Mercedes take it and run ahead of them?

Read more: Max Verstappen is “not as aggressive” with Lewis Hamilton as Nico Rosberg: Jacques Villeneuve

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