Max Verstappen suffers blow as key player to his three successive title wins ‘leaves role’ | F1 | Sport

Max Verstappen will be without performance coach Bradley Scanes next year after he opted to leave Red Bull after the conclusion of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. He and the Dutchman had worked together throughout all three of his title-winning campaigns after starting their partnership four seasons ago in 2020.

Verstappen capped off what will go down as one of the best individual F1 seasons of all time in typical fashion in Abu Dhabi, following up an impressive pole position with a characteristically measured Grand Prix victory on Sunday.

The Dutchman ended the season with a record-breaking 19 Grand Prix victories from a possible 22, finishing with over double the points of nearest championship rival and team-mate Sergio Perez. 

However, as he prepares to challenge for a fourth consecutive Drivers’ Championship title, he will have to do so without a key member of his entourage after Dutch news outlet De Telegraaf confirmed that Verstappen’s personal performance coach will be leaving the team ahead of the 2024 season.

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According to the report, the motivation behind Scanes stepping back from his work with Verstappen stems from a desire to spend more time with his family. The 2024 F1 calendar will breach the 24-race mark for the first time in the sport’s history and continues to place strain on those working within the sport.

Despite losing Scanes from his team, it is unlikely that Verstappen will be fearful heading into 2024. Red Bull were still the fastest team in terms of performance at the Yas Marina Circuit and this was achieved in spite of the fact that they have been focusing fully on the development of the RB20 since the Singapore Grand Prix.

Recapping his season after the chequered flag in Abu Dhabi, Verstappen said: “[It] was an incredible season, it was a bit emotional on the last lap. The last time sitting in the car which of course has given me a lot.  Of course, very proud to win the final race, I have to say thanks to everyone at Red Bull it’s been an incredible year. 

“It will be hard to do something similar, but we definitely enjoyed this year. It will be very hard to have another season like this, we know that you always want to do better, but doing better is not always race wins and winning the championship. 

“We are working hard for next year for a very competitive car. For sure all the other teams want to try and beat us next year, but we are ready for the battle and in the meantime, we’re going to enjoy this year as well.”

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