F1 champion Max Verstappen dropped retirement bombshell before Monaco Grand Prix
Formula One world champion Max Verstappen dropped a retirement bombshell before Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix.
The Dutch driver won his maiden world title last year, pipping Lewis Hamilton to the Drivers' Championship in controversial fashion in Abu Dhabi in December. However, Verstappen hinted that he could walk away from the sport when his current Red Bull deal expires in 2028 prior to finishing third in Monte Carlo at the weekend.
Verstappen was rewarded with a bumper new contract off the back of his title win, with Red Bull reportedly paying the 24-year-old a whopping £40million-per-year as part of his new deal.
Speaking ahead of Sunday's race, though, Verstappen admitted he could retire once that deal expires, telling the Daily Mail: "I’m not planning on changing teams. I’m happy here and they are happy with me.
"But I haven’t made up my mind what I will do after 2028. I might stop. I have been in Formula 1 since I was 17. It’s been a long time. I’ve done a lot of seasons in F1.
"I may want to do different stuff. By 31, I don’t know whether I will have peaked or where the drop-off in performance may have occurred."
Verstappen would be 31-years-old and into his 15th year as an F1 driver by the time his deal expires in 2028, having first taken part in a race weekend at the age of 17 in 2014, the youngest person ever to do so.
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He also revealed that he is keen to compete in other forms of racing, something that several other drivers have done since leaving F1. Other drivers have appeared in both IndyCar and the World Rally Championship, whilst Verstappen's father Jos competed in the Le Mans endurance race after leaving F1.
The idea of a career in endurance racing also appeals to his son, with Verstappen adding: "I want to do other types of races — endurance racing, for example. Maybe I will have had enough of travelling all the time. Maybe I will want an easier life and just to do the races I like.
"Whenever an opportunity comes to win a championship, you want to take it. If I’m in a fight in 2028 it may be stupid to suddenly stop. It’s difficult to know."
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