Max Verstappen’s father and manager has ramped up his bid for a top seat in formula one for 2017.
In the past days and weeks, bosses for Mercedes and Ferrari have admitted their interest in the 18-year-old Dutch sensation.
It comes amid speculation Verstappen could be a free agent for 2017 unless Red Bull promotes him from Toro Rosso to the energy drink outfit’s top team.
“It’s a nice situation to have,” Red Bull team boss Christian Horner told F1’s official website.
“We don’t have an issue with competitive drivers in the next few years. It is a healthy situation, it’s healthy competition and it keeps all the drivers honest,” he added.
That is not a denial that Russian Daniil Kvyat could be relegated to Toro Rosso to make way for Verstappen, as Mercedes boss Toto Wolff agrees he would be “very, very surprised” if Max is not a Red Bull driver in 2017.
For Max and his father Jos, it is an enviable situation.
“We know about Ferrari’s interest in Max,” former F1 driver Jos told the Spanish sports daily Marca, “but we have no rush. I think it’s early for that.
“Next year Max is going to be in one of the top teams in the championship. And when I say top, I mean Mercedes, Ferrari or Red Bull.”
Asked specifically if there is a chance Max could be at any one of those three teams, Jos answered: “Yes, absolutely.
“Not at the same (probability) level,” he admitted, “because our first choice is Red Bull. In the team they are very happy with my son and I think that should be the way to go for Max at this time.”