“There Is a Performance Clause” – Reports Reveal Conditions Under Which Max Verstappen Can Leave Red Bull F1

Published 02/14/2021, 4:44 AM EST
MONTMELO, SPAIN: Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing walks in the Paddock during previews ahead of the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)


Max Verstappen has been the golden boy for Red Bull since 2016. They have invested in their star driver heavily to make him into a world champion, trying as hard as they can to keep him at the team. However, Helmut Marko recently admitted that the Dutchman’s contract has a performance clause that allows him to leave the team under certain conditions.

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Verstappen was the sole driver putting pressure on the Brackley squad in 2020. But the Milton Keynes team’s car was not fast enough to beat Mercedes. According to the clause, the Dutch superstar is free to seek out another team if Red Bull fail to deliver a car that gives him a real shot at the title.

SPIELBERG, AUSTRIA – JULY 05: Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner, Red Bull Racing Team Consultant Dr Helmut Marko and Renault Sport F1 Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul talk on the grid before the Formula One Grand Prix of Austria at Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

“Yes, there is a performance clause. I don’t want to go into details, but it more or less says that Max can compete for race wins and the world championship on his own merits. If he can do that, his contract is extended. If not, he would be free,” stated Marko.

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ALSO – WATCH: Max Verstappen Displays his Masterclass as a 12 Year Old on Kart

To retain Max Verstappen, Red Bull has to improve

Despite two wins for Red Bull and Verstappen last season, the team was still about half a second behind Mercedes. They have invested immensely in the young Dutch and are working hard to win back the championship. Marko admitted a lot has to come from Red Bull to make that a reality.

“That’s our goal and I believe in it, not only because of Max, but because it’s in our DNA that we want to win. We are on track and I think we can fulfil the clause.”

Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates with a trophy on the podium after finishing in second place Pool via REUTERS/Bryn Lennon

But what if Red Bull fails the performance clause?

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Well, in that case, Verstappen will want to move on to a better team, which most likely would be Mercedes. It is interesting to note that Mercedes has two empty cockpits by the end of 2022.

The Dutchman has matured over time and proved his racecraft and skills. If he were to win a championship, Red Bull would really want to be the team he does that with.

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Would you like to see Verstappen win a championship with Red Bull? Let us know!

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Ayush Manjunath

586 articles

Ayush Manjunath is a Formula 1 author for EssentiallySports with more than 500 articles to his name. A Law graduate and a current Sports Management student, Ayush also has a certificate from UCLA on Sports, Media and Entertainment Management. He has an undying love for motorsports and lives to see Max Verstappen, George Russell, Charles Leclerc, and Lando Norris battle for the championship one day!

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