Red Bull have four options to replace Max Verstappen if retirement fears become reality

MAX VERSTAPPEN prevailed in a tense battle against Lewis Hamilton in 2021.

Max Verstappen was jubilant after pipping Lewis Hamilton in a tense shootout for the 2021 world title, but the battle took its toll. Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko claimed that the showdown was so draining on all involved, the Dutchman’s F1 career may be cut short due to the physical and emotional demands of fighting it out with the Brit. At just 24-years-old, retirement may be a few years off for Verstappen just yet, but Express Sport looks at four contenders who Red Bull could start to think about if another gruelling contest with Hamilton unfolds in 2022:
Max2
Gasly’s F1 ascent was a speedy one, being called up to Red Bull in 2019 after a season with their junior outfit, which was then called Toro Rosso.

But he struggled to cope with the step up in expectations, finishing a full lap behind Verstappen on several occasions, before being demoted back to the junior team after less than one full season.

Max Verstappen was jubilant after pipping Lewis Hamilton in a tense shootout for the 2021 world title, but the battle took its toll. Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko claimed that the showdown was so draining on all involved, the Dutchman’s F1 career may be cut short due to the physical and emotional demands of fighting it out with the Brit. At just 24-years-old, retirement may be a few years off for Verstappen just yet, but Express Sport looks at four contenders who Red Bull could start to think about if another gruelling contest with Hamilton unfolds in 2022:

Verstappen reacts after matching Hamilton and Schumacher achievement
Pierre Gasly
Gasly’s F1 ascent was a speedy one, being called up to Red Bull in 2019 after a season with their junior outfit, which was then called Toro Rosso.
Max3
But he struggled to cope with the step up in expectations, finishing a full lap behind Verstappen on several occasions, before being demoted back to the junior team after less than one full season.

Since then, Toro Rosso has become AlphaTauri, and Gasly has once again left onlookers impressed with his performances.

In 2021, the 25-year-old Frenchman significantly outscored team-mate Yuki Tsonada, clinching ninth in the Drivers’ Championship to produce one of the best pound-for-pound outcomes in the whole field.

Juri Vips
The young Estonian has been linked with a call-up to F1 for some time.

With two race wins and seven podiums from 23 starts in his F2 career to date, Vips finished the 2021 season higher than any other current Red Bull junior driver.

That success came after a Covid-hit 2020 had stunted his rise through the ranks though, with Tsunoda instead jumping the queue and getting the call up to AlphaTauri.

In 2021, Vips explained to Autosport: “Obviously Yuki [Tsunoda] had a really good year last year and he got the well-deserved promotion. If anything, I think it has made me stronger.”

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