Max Verstappen has been with Red Bull Racing since 2015, and is now committed to them until the end of the 2028 season. But, the two-time Formula 1 world champion could ditch his current employers for Ferrari if the opportunity arose but will never join Mercedes says Dutch racing driver Tom Coronel.

The 25-year-old claimed his second F1 Drivers' title at the Japanese Grand Prix earlier this month, and has no intention of leaving the Milton Keynes-based team anytime soon. Verstappen has indicated that he could remain with the Austrian team for the remainder of his career.

Verstappen came up through the Red Bull Junior Programme before entering F1 with their junior team Alpha Tauri, formerly known as Scuderia Toro Rosso. He then joined the Red Bull senior team, and has gone on to become one of the dominant forces in the sport.

The young Dutchman beat seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton to the title after an intense battle in 2021 before cruising to his second title in 2022 with four races remaining. The Red Bull driver has a chance to claim his 13th win of the season at this weekend's United States GP.

Verstappen remains committed to Red Bull having signed a long-term deal earlier this year, but Coronel feels no driver will turn down a chance to drive a Ferrari if the opportunity ever arose. However, one move Coronel is certain the 2022 champion will not approve is a switch to Mercedes.

"He will never race there [Mercedes]. There is such a blemish... I know the family very well," Coronel said. "Straight is straight, crooked is crooked. There is no grey area with the Verstappen family. They had a good relationship with Toto Wolff, but it has not been nice during the [2021] season."

"But Ferrari on the other hand... then I think 49 per cent is even low," he added. "One year at Toro Rosso and the rest at Red Bull. Then you have been with the same team for more than fifteen years. Can it be something else? Well, maybe even before then."

It is no secret that most F1 drivers dream of donning the famous red racing overalls, but few are able to achieve it for various reasons. Even Hamilton has previously expressed his love for Ferrari despite committing his future to Mercedes.

"You want two things: make it to Formula One and you want to drive for Ferrari. If you have driven for Ferrari as a Formula One driver, then it comes full circle."

Max Verstappen celebrates winning the world championship in Japan with his Red Bull teammates
Max Verstappen celebrates winning the world championship in Japan with his Red Bull teammates AFP News