Max Verstappen suggests Lewis Hamilton planted Ferrari rumour

Max Verstappen is currently the highest-paid driver on the Formula 1 grid, with Lewis Hamilton second on the list.

Reigning World Champion Max Verstappen admitted he’s “not interested” in whether Lewis Hamilton moves to Ferrari or not next season, following reports ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix that the Italians are preparing a £40 million offer.

Verstappen has never been a driver to get involved in discussions about the future of a fellow competitor, with him often preferring to focus on his own job at hand.

Despite this, the Dutchman was asked ahead of the weekend for his views on the speculation, to which he admitted that perhaps the rumour just “ups the price” on Hamilton’s widely expected Mercedes renewal.

“I’m not betting, I’m also not interested!” admitted Verstappen.

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Verstappen added: “It’s his decision, right? I think he feels really happy at Mercedes.

“They’ve won a lot together. Maybe it’s good, because it ups the price a bit at Mercedes to pay him, so it’s good.”

The two-time World Champion is somewhat targeting revenge this weekend at the Circuit de Monaco after being furious with his team-mate last season, whom he believes span in Q3 on purpose.

Sergio Perez span in the closing seconds of Q3 at Portier last season, leaving Verstappen furious due to the fact he was pushing for pole position.

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Perez ultimately ended up winning the Monaco GP last season, with Verstappen having not won at the Principality since 2021.

He enters this weekend with a 14-point advantage over Perez in the Drivers’ Championship; however, the championship leader believes Charles Leclerc will be his biggest challenger at the iconic venue.

With the home hero targeting a third consecutive Monaco pole, it’s easy to see why Verstappen is expecting Leclerc to be a threat.

“I think naturally maybe Charles,” Verstappen said.

“Ferrari in general, Carlos is also pretty handy around here. 

“But also I think Aston Martin, they are quite good in the slow speed. They haven’t been as efficient on the straights, so I guess for hear they can be close.”

Elsewhere, Verstappen is unsure what to expect from Mercedes this weekend, given that the Silver Arrows are introducing their new concept.

With so little being known about how strong the Germans will be, Verstappen is unsure where they’ll feature when the action gets underway.

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“For them first it’s about understanding the whole new concept,” he said.

“I don’t know where it’s going to put them.

“I would always put it on the car as soon as possible, because you learn more than leaving it in the garage not using it.”