Helmut Marko is worried Max Verstappen will breach contract

Max Verstappen signed his long-term lucrative contract with Red Bull ahead of the 2022 F1 season.

Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko is worried that reigning World Champion Max Verstappen might not complete the entirety of his long-term contract, which expires at the end of 2028.

Verstappen signed the lucrative deal in 2022, with him having become the highest-paid driver on the grid as a result of agreeing to the long-term contract with Red Bull.

Incredibly, he’ll be just 31 years old when his deal expires; however, the two-time World Champion has openly admitted that he may not agree to a new contract for 2029 and beyond due to concerns about the future of Formula 1.

He’s expressed his intent on competing in other championships whilst he’s still performing at his prime, with the idea of making the switch to the likes of endurance racing in his early-40s not being a favourable one.

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Given that he has claimed two world titles and is set to win a third this year, Verstappen doesn’t really have much else to prove in Formula 1, something which could push him towards an early exit.

Should he retire from F1 at the end of 2028, then he still would’ve completed 14 seasons at the pinnacle of motorsport, due to the fact he made his debut at just 17 years old.

However, Marko is concerned that Verstappen could leave the sport before his deal expires.

Verstappen has shared his displeasure at the sport’s format being constantly changed as of late, with him very much preferring the traditional format.

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Since it was initially discussed, the 25-year-old has been very much against the sprint race format as well as the expanding calendar, which will consist of 24 races in 2024.

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Should the format continue to be changed going forwards and if even more races are added, then there is every chance that the Red Bull star could quit prior to the end of his deal, something Marko is very wary of based on the severity of his comments.

“Max doesn’t say something like that just casually,” Marko said to oe24.

“I hope he fulfils his contract, which runs until 2028, until the end. Who knows, maybe one day he’ll come and say, ‘Thank you, that’s it’.”