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Wolff Claps Back at Red Bull’s Critique Over Verstappen Chase: A Tug-of-War for F1’s Top Talent



Toto Wolff counters Red Bull's negative comments on Mercedes chasing Max Verstappen, as voiced by Red Bull CEO Oliver Mintzlaff.

Mercedes Formula One team leader Toto Wolff has replied to criticisms from Red Bull CEO Oliver Mintzlaff regarding his attempts to recruit Max Verstappen.

Mercedes has openly been pursuing Verstappen, given the alleged disturbances and chaos reported within the Red Bull team, leading their managing director, Mintzlaff, to warn Wolff to steer clear.

"Mintzlaff acknowledged in an interview with Germany's Bild the strain that Toto Wolff, along with potentially other teams, has faced from lagging behind for several years."

"However, I believe Toto Wolff ought to focus on his own difficulties – he's got plenty of those.

"It's also about showing respect. Continuously discussing individuals from different teams isn't suitable."

In response to inquiries regarding Mintzlaff's remarks, Wolff addressed the media at the Miami Grand Prix, stating, "I'm unaware of what this individual is responding to. It holds no significance for me."

Wolff emphasized that every team in the F1 lineup has set their sights on the thrice-crowned world champion.

"The Austrian reiterated his belief that he is an essential asset for every team present, emphasizing that, in his opinion, he shouldn't depart in 2025."

"He currently stands as the leading driver and is faced with a choice. It's possible that there might not even be a choice to consider, and the situation could remain unchanged. However, this does not offer us any clear direction."

Mintzlaff expressed confidence, stating he harbors “no worries” about Verstappen desiring to leave Red Bull, given his contract runs through 2028.

"Mintzlaff mentioned, "Max is seeking the quickest vehicle, and we possess it."

"Max aims to become a global champion. He stands the greatest opportunity to achieve this with our team."

"Max is a dedicated individual. He recognizes that Christian Horner and Helmut Marko have consistently placed their faith in him – and he values this deeply."

"Red Bull is an exceptional brand that resonates strongly with him."

"Hence, there are numerous arguments supporting it, with no objections."

Wolff confessed his desire to onboard Verstappen as a successor to Lewis Hamilton but refuted claims that he had scheduled a discussion with the Dutch driver about his career prospects.

"He refrained from elaborating, confirming that the meeting scheduled for Monday has been canceled."

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