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Fernando Alonso ‘pushing’ Red Bull for answers as Max Verstappen weighs up exit

But it’s the saga surrounding Verstappen that is providing the most intrigue. The Belgian star is gunning for a fourth straight world title win this season, and is currently on a big-money deal at Red Bull until 2028.

However, the saga surrounding team principal Christian Horner appears to have compromised his relationship with the 26-year old. Indeed, his father Jos has publicly called for Horner to be removed from his position, leading to crisis talks between the three ahead of the Australian Grand Prix.

The F1 grid is already guaranteed to be shaken up in 2025, with Lewis Hamilton switching from Mercedes to Ferrari. That leaves the winner at Albert Park, Carlos Sainz Jnr, without a seat, with the Spaniard also touted for a switch to the constructors’ champions.

Two-time world champion Alonso is currently the oldest driver in F1 at 42, but has enjoyed a new lease of life since moving to Aston Martin from Alpine last season. And he’s previously voiced his intentions to continue into his late 40s as long as he feels he can still compete at the top level.

And in an interview with the Race, he argued he needed to know what offers were on the table early in order to finalise his next move.“ Pressed on his career switches in the past, he said: “I chose when to go from a team, when to join a team. I chose when to stop Formula 1. And I chose when to come back.

“And now I will choose what I do next year. I will not follow what others do, and they dictate my destiny. I will do it on my own, for good or for bad, it’s the way that I am.

“I don’t want to wait maybe until the summer, because I think that will be unfair for me and the team, if they have to find more options or things like that. But I don’t want to rush as well, and make a decision while my head is not into next year.”

Aston Martin themselves have ambitions to challenge for a world title, with executive chairman Lawrence Stroll having made lavish investments. But that notion is still likely to take years to materialise, with Alonso and son Lance fourth and 10th in the standings respectively last season, and the pair fifth in the constructors’ race.

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