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Red Bull never wanted Alonso for 2019, says Verstappen

  • Published on 20 Sep 2018 13:13
  • comments 32
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Max Verstappen claims that Red Bull was never interested in signing Fernando Alonso for the 2019 season. During the summer break, Daniel Ricciardo announced that he would be leaving Red Bull to join Renault, which opened up a drive at the energy drink team.

The seat was quickly filled by Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly, who currently races for Toro Rosso. Over the Belgian Grand Prix weekend, Fernando Alonso claimed that he had offers to join the team next year, but instead opted to walk away from the series.

But Verstappen states that he knows for sure that Alonso was not considered by Red Bull: "Alonso was not an option for 2019. It's something I know," he is quoted by AS newspaper as saying at a sponsor event in his home country.

And he thinks he can have a very positive relationship with Gasly at Red Bull: "I think I can get along very well with Pierre and I think they have also evaluated that, so I am satisfied knowing that they have chosen him," he said.

Last time out in Singapore, Red Bull qualified on the front row of the grid at the hands of Verstappen. The Dutchman crossed the line in the same position on Sunday and he now claims that the RB14 is the best car on the grid - only being let down by its lack of Renault power.

"We have the best car on the grid, as we saw in Singapore," said Verstappen. "We hope that next year with the arrival of Honda, and its budget that is much higher than that of our current engine supplier, we will continue in the right direction," he added.

"We have the right people, it's just the full package has not been ideal. It will be difficult to get it next year, but I hope we have an opportunity in 2020. As a team we already have the winning mentality, and now we will also have it on the engine side as well," he concluded.

Replies (32)

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  • "I'm happy with Gasly, because next year I'll have a wingman #2 driver to let me past, like Lewis has in Bottas".

    • + 2
    • Sep 20 2018 - 15:45
    • Your comment sounds like you haven't seen F1 this year. Let me tell you what is going on. He has Ricciardo as teammate, who is a very fast driver. He doesn't need his help. He just qualifies in front and drives away.
      I'm sure he doesn't have to fear grandpa Alonso. The gap would be just bigger.

      • + 2
      • Sep 20 2018 - 16:55
    • Except when he doesnt. And Verstappen is still very uneven, as we've seen this year. He is top notch when he is good, but when he isnt... I think Rindtchamp summed it up well. He is their number 1 driver now, a.k.a Red Bull's pet diva, and anything he want, he'll get. He didnt want Alonso= he get a junior driver. But will Gasly comply, I wonder?

      • + 1
      • Sep 20 2018 - 17:05
    • I can understand the premise of your frustration, it would have been a much larger margin than the one RIC garnered over VER.

      • + 0
      • Sep 20 2018 - 17:38
    • No reason a top driver interested in #1 treatment would want Alonso as a teammate. Also to be clear, Ricciardo is very talented, top driver. But there is no analysis that would lead me to conclude that Ricciardo ranks above Alonso. No doubt Max will compete closely with whoever partners him, but let's not get carried away. Although Max's fans like to do exactly the opposite. Some remind me of Trump's fans in the U.S. #alternativefacts

      • + 0
      • Sep 20 2018 - 18:05
    • I agree AJPP, though lets put some space between the fans and the rabid zealots. Most Max fans are alright and can be reasoned with, whereas Max zealots who you dont agree with will chase you through a castle while flesh eating dutch parasites pop their heads open and let out a loud, blood curdling "Hop Max!".

      • + 0
      • Sep 20 2018 - 18:18
    • And the same apply to any type of zealot, mind, with differing warcries as they/we run headlong into a wall.

      • + 0
      • Sep 20 2018 - 18:21
    • "And Verstappen is still very uneven"

      Uneven? Interesting. The score table doesn't tell the full story.


      "He is top notch when he is good, but when he isnt..."

      He performs always on an equal level.


      "He didnt want Alonso= he get a junior driver."

      No one wants Alonso. Not Ferrari, not Mercedes, nor Red Bull. It's not Verstappens decision, he doesn't run the team. Although I'm sure Max would love to wipe the floor with him.

      • + 0
      • Sep 21 2018 - 12:36
    • Yes, uneven. I take it you too watched the first 7 races of this season. And no, he doesnt always perform on the same level, as Im sure you are aware. As for the rest: dont get fooled. If Hammy and Vet get a say on what pet they'd like for christmas, name on valid reason for why Verstappen cant. If you like him, more power to you, but just dont get all zealous about it. It isnt what its cracked up to be.

      • + 0
      • Sep 22 2018 - 12:09
    • Yes he does. The circumstances were just different, his performances were always at the same, high level. Or was he struggling with pace and could not keep up with his teammate? Every time he got involved in something, he was ahead of Ricciardo who capitalized on it. When he qualified behind, it took him a few corners to overtake.

      "If Hammy and Vet get a say on what pet they'd like for christmas, name on valid reason for why Verstappen cant."

      I don't think Verstappen has the same diva attitude, or fear as the both you mentioned. He is controlling a driver that "destroyed" Vettel. Hamilton almost quit F1 because of Rosberg and lost the title to him. Rosberg was a number 2 driver, who was treated like an unwanted bastard since the beginning. And yet Hamilton couldn't handle him. It's no surprise that Vettel and Hamilton are depending on a number 1 status and a weak teammate. Verstappen on the other hand has no competition on the current grid.
      The only question is, what type of a driver he prefers. A nice guy who helps bringing the team forward, or an toxic individual that creates drama? I think, that's the area where he has a choice.
      If D. Mateschitz wanted to hire a "superstar" like Alonso, he would be sitting next to Max, no matter what. But if it's about character of two young drivers, I think Max has the saying. This is a different situation to the pair above.

      • + 0
      • Sep 22 2018 - 20:56
  • Gasly will no doubt start as the " no 2 " driver - but I dont believe RB will make him the dedicated wingman, if he can beat Max, I m quite sure they ll let him

    • + 4
    • Sep 20 2018 - 16:42
    • Sure, but I frankly expect a merciless beat-down of Gasly. No doubt Pierre belongs in F1, but he's not a top driver and Max is.

      • + 1
      • Sep 20 2018 - 18:06
  • Does Verstappen know all the dealings of Redbull Racing? Does Dr. Marko keep him in loop about every single transaction done outside the race track? I thought VER is a race driver!

    • + 0
    • Sep 20 2018 - 17:37
    • kratos

      Posts: 4

      He surely is involved in a great deal. It's part of why and how Red Bull convinced him to stay, he wouldn't get this type of preference at Merc or Ferrari (yet).

      • + 0
      • Sep 20 2018 - 18:00
  • "I think I can get along very well with Pierre and I think they have also evaluated that...", that's a very cunning way of saying, that they've asked the driver who stays (Max) whom he would prefer as team mate, which canceled Sainz Jr. out and possibly forced an exit on Ricciardo. See, I am not buying the story that they expected Danny Ric to stay, they didn't even want to; I think Ricciardo left because they told him to. They're putting all their chips on one man, as with Seb Vettel before that because it's a strategy which has worked before.

    • + 0
    • Sep 20 2018 - 19:22
  • blade

    Posts: 341

    I don't think its so surprising VER is aware of the main dealings, teamwork and harmony in the team are important.. I agree with Kyalamikid - I don't believe RBR would stop a proper contest between the teammates - GAS has every chance of outperforming VER and that, frankly is the only way he will avoid becoming a number 2 - otherwise like BOT he will become defacto number 2 at some point in the year. He will know that. Bottas knows that. You are then into the next season where the slate is wiped clean again, even if VER outperforms GAS they will start a new seasons as equal again and so the circle goes on. I hate team orders period - but this is a reality - there's money at stake for points.

    • + 1
    • Sep 20 2018 - 20:09
    • Bottas became number 2 status the second he signed his Mercedes contract. Same goes for Rosberg. They kept him to support Schumacher. Unfortunately for them, he turned out to be the better driver at that time...

      • + 0
      • Sep 21 2018 - 12:41
  • xoya

    Posts: 476

    Only team that should want Alonso is Ferrari, given how Vettel is error prone.
    It is his and theirs chance of a champions title. They owe him a championship winning car and they are due at least two titles (2008. and 2012.)
    Alas, those bridges are FUBAR.

    • + 1
    • Sep 20 2018 - 21:29
    • @XOYA I'm asking assuming you're italian [because of the flag :)], how do Italians feel about Alonso? I hear he's still very well regarded and some even wanting him to be brought back to Ferrari. I ask because the media has made a big deal out of the way he left Ferrari, although I'm yet to hear something to that effect from a Ferrari person.

      • + 0
      • Sep 20 2018 - 23:39
    • xoya

      Posts: 476

      Nah, I am Serbian. I chose an Italian flag because I had the option of choosing 4 or 5 flags when registering my account and just wanted to be a bit different. :)
      First I selected the Netherlands flag but decided I didn't want to be mistaken for a Verstappen fan. :P

      • + 0
      • Sep 21 2018 - 08:50
    • Hehe I had the British flag at first, before the Swedish flag was added. :)

      • + 0
      • Sep 22 2018 - 13:22
  • boudy

    Posts: 1,162

    Alonso is all about causing trouble and unsettling drivers. It must be terrible to be his teammate if you beat him. Ferrari looks like a no go for Alonso, can't say that I would blame them for that. There is just an too big a price to pay when he drives for your team, he is almost toxic. McLaren will do better next year for that reason alone.

    • + 2
    • Sep 20 2018 - 23:52
  • jj284b

    Posts: 15

    Alonso would eat him alive...

    • + 1
    • Sep 21 2018 - 07:13
    • Only outside of the car.

      • + 0
      • Sep 21 2018 - 12:36
    • jj284b

      Posts: 15

      riiight.. because Max is stable driver that never make mistake... lol Alonso is one of the most consistent drivers ever... Verstappen would end up in same situation as Vandoorne... and personally, i think Vandoorne has a lot more talent than Verstappen.

      • + 0
      • Sep 22 2018 - 10:04
    • "i think Vandoorne has a lot more talent than Verstappen."

      And I think that you are a troll. Not even a good one.

      • + 0
      • Sep 22 2018 - 10:32
    • Well. That's one of the (main) reasons for this knee-jerk reaction from this racer.

      • + 0
      • Sep 23 2018 - 03:39
  • boudy

    Posts: 1,162

    His story has ended and he created his own untimely finish. Good luck Alonso.

    • + 1
    • Sep 21 2018 - 07:57
  • fastcat

    Posts: 6

    The only driver he needs to concentrate on beating is Lewis Hamilton.

    • + 0
    • Sep 22 2018 - 00:41
  • cricho

    Posts: 80

    Even Lewis Hamilton says Alonso is the best pilot he has raced against

    • + 0
    • Sep 23 2018 - 02:47
    • Did he say that after he made his comment about the best fans?

      • + 0
      • Sep 23 2018 - 12:21

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