Max Verstappen says seeing Honda team up with Aston Martin in Formula 1 is a “shame” and it was “unfortunate” how his partnership with Red Bull ended.
It was revealed on Wednesday that aston martin will become an official Honda partner in 2026, having previously announced its departure System 1 in 2021. What was seen as “embarrassment” by the two-time world champion, Max Verstappen.
The Japanese manufacturer officially left the division that year, but continued to support the engine division Red Bull. His future after the end of 2025, when his deal with Red Bull ends, was unclear, with the Milton Keynes team working with ford for its Powertrains efforts starting in 2026.
Honda says its decision to commit to F1 so soon after its retirement was motivated by the series’ commitment to rising sustainable ambitions.
Speaking ahead of this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix, Verstappen said it was “a bit of a shame how it all turned out”, referring to Honda’s changes. He said he “loved working with [a Honda]”, adding that “for Aston Martin, it is very good”.
Verstappen said: “I think from our side, actually, it’s a bit unfortunate how it all happened, because a few years ago they said ‘let’s stop’, so Red Bull created their engine division and then at one point they say ‘no, we’re going ahead’ .'”
“Unfortunately, once you’re already in the process of building the whole engine yourself, you can’t work together anymore. It’s a shame, I’d say.”
Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing
Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool
“We have always had a very good relationship with them and to see them go to Aston Martin is a shame. But I mean, we’re also very excited for us from 2026 to see what happens with Ford.”
“That’s the way it is. A few years ago we thought they would leave, now they stay and go with Aston Martin. Aston Martin is very good, they have a big engine, we all know that. That’s the way it is.”
He added: “I love working with them, we’ve had a lot of success already so of course I’ll be sad to see them go at some point, but we expected that, right? Goodbye.”
“I mean, of course I’m happy for the Honda guys that they’re staying in Formula 1, but it’s sad to see them go.”
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