Reigning Formula 1 champion Max Verstappen has repeatedly stated that he wants to finish his career with Red Bull. And it now seems he’s one step closer to that goal after reportedly inking a new deal with the F1 team.
According to Dutch media outlet De Telegraaf, the agreement adds several more years to Verstappen’s existing contract that ran through 2023. It also makes him one of the highest-paid F1 drivers. The reported figure is around $53 million a year; the same amount Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton is making.
The new contract removes any doubt about Verstappen’s long-term future with the franchise, although it seemed unlikely that the 24-year-old Dutchman might wish for a change of scenery. It also rewards Verstappen for winning his first F1 Championship in 2021 and putting an end to Hamilton’s streak of four consecutive titles.
Red Bull will also have its no. 2 driver Sergio Perez on board for the next season after the Mexican signed an extension last year. However, Perez’s future with the team is uncertain beyond 2022, considering that Red Bull prefers to give opportunities to their younger drivers.
The 2022 F1 season is scheduled to start on March 20th with Bahrain Grand Prix.