Red Bull chief denounces Wolff’s public pursuit of Verstappen

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Red Bull managing director Oliver Mintzlaff has sharply criticized Toto Wolff’s public pursuit of Max Verstappen, implying that it reflects a “lack of respect” by the Mercedes F1 team principal.

Mintzlaff's comments come amidst persistent speculation surrounding Verstappen's potential future with Red Bull, despite the Dutchman being contracted to the team until the end of 2028.

Wolff has openly expressed his interest in the three-time world champion and the Brackley squad’s desire to potentially secure his services.

But Mintzlaff, speaking in a rare interview with Bild Am Sonntag, denounced the Austrian’s public courting and rubbished talk that Verstappen is considering a move to Mercedes.

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“I understand the pressure that Toto Wolff and perhaps other teams have after years of being behind,” commented the Red Bull chief.

“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.”


Mintzlaff made clear that despite the internal turmoil and power struggles that have marked the beginning of the season for Red Bull, there have been no indications that Verstappen might be seeking to prematurely terminate his current contract with the championship winning team.

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

“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.”

Mintzlaff feels that there are no compelling reasons that would encourage Verstappen to leave Red Bull.

“At least I can't think of any,” he said. “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.”

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