Max Verstappen agrees with Christian Horner on axed Red Bull junior Juri Vips

Christian Horner and Max Verstappen are in agreement over Juri Vips amid his racism scandal. Red Bull suspended Vips in June after he used a racial slur during a gaming live stream before dropping him as their official reserve and test driver entirely.

But after the Estonian 21-year-old’s release, team principal Christian Horner claimed they would support him and suggested he could get a second chance if he learned from his mistakes. Earlier this month, he said: “We have cancelled our agreement with him [Vips], and that will undoubtedly give him time for reflection.

“Everybody at some point deserves a second chance if they can show that they have really learnt from their mistakes. He is a young guy, a young kid, and we will be supporting him – even though he has had his agreement terminated – from a mental health and educational perspective. Hopefully, he will learn from it.”

Whether he remains part of the Red Bull junior programme is unclear after his F2 team Hitech decided to keep him. He most recently raced at the Red Bull Ring – of all places – finishing in P5 and P8 in the weekend’s two races and is placed eighth in the overall standings.

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And Verstappen has joined Horner in claiming Vips deserves a second chance because he understands the error of his ways. The Dutch world champion labelled him a ‘super nice guy’ and has called on him to get the opportunity to prove he’s become more educated.

“He is not part of Oracle Red Bull Racing as a reserve and test driver,” Verstappen explained. “I do feel people deserve a second chance. Probably not a third, but some things can be easily said, sometimes not even really thought about how badly you can hurt someone.

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“I know Juri a bit more than the average person, and he is actually a super nice guy. I think he really understood what he did wrong because he is in a very difficult moment in his career with everyone judging him – fair enough, what he said was not correct.

“I definitely think he deserves a second chance. I read the statement from F2 that they wouldn’t have done the same, but he deserves a second chance to show that he learned from what he did wrong and go out there and show that he can be a better person, or at least be more educated about what you are saying.”

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