Max Verstappen drops huge Lando Norris team-mate hint

Lando Norris is contracted to McLaren until 2025, but he could reportedly join Red Bull before then.

Reigning World Champion Max Verstappen has admitted that himself and “best friend” Lando Norris “talk about” becoming team-mates one day, hinting at whom the Dutchman would like to replace Sergio Perez.

Verstappen and Norris are known to get on very well and are often seen together away from the circuit, often in Monaco.

Both drivers are incredibly quick and boast huge amounts of talent, something Verstappen in particular is demonstrating currently.

The reigning World Champion claimed his ninth consecutive win last weekend, following a strong display at the Dutch Grand Prix.

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His win saw him match Sebastian Vettel’s record from 2013, which Verstappen can actually eclipse this weekend at the Italian Grand Prix.

Nobody can match the Dutchman currently, who’s won 11 races in total already this season.

He can wrap up his third consecutive title potentially at the Japanese Grand Prix, which takes place towards the end of September.

Norris is yet to claim his first race win, but it should be noted that he drives for a midfield side.

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However, the fact he drives for a midfield team makes his podium finishes at Silverstone and the Hungaroring that much more impressive, with him certainly destined to become a race winner.

Norris has held talks with Red Bull before and does appear to be on their radar, for then Perez’s deal expires at the end of 2024.

Interestingly, Norris’ McLaren contract doesn’t conclude until the end of 2025, meaning a move to Red Bull is unlikely until 2026.

Nevertheless, Verstappen and Norris have discussed partnering up in the future.

“We talk about it,” Verstappen told Sky Sports Italy.

“But he’s contracted to McLaren for a long time.

“We’ll see what happens in the future.”

Despite being very close with Norris, the McLaren driver isn’t Verstappen’s “dream” team-mate, with that being his father, ex-F1 driver Jos Verstappen.

“For me personally, dream team, if I could choose and could bring people back, it would be with my dad,” Verstappen revealed.

He added: “From my dad’s side, I think his career didn’t go to plan, and I think it had a lot of potential.

“But again, he knew what went wrong, and he knew that it was very important to have the right people around you from a young age, to be guided in the right way.

“And I think that’s what he did with me.

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“So from all that happened in his career and what went wrong, he tried to prevent me from having really, and that’s why I think when I grew up and got all the way to Formula 1 with him by my side, it helped me a lot to prepare.

“He was constantly trying to make me aware of things, what could happen, [telling me] I need to be ready, I need to be fit, I need to also be aware of what’s going on in the paddock, you know that’s a difficult world.

“So he prepared me in a very professional way, I think from a very young age, to be ready for all certain kind of scenarios.”