Could Isack Hadjar be Red Bull’s next Max Verstappen?

Max Verstappen - SPIELBERG, AUSTRIA - JULY 10: <> during the Round 5:Spielberg Feature race of the Formula 3 Championship at Red Bull Ring on July 10, 2022 in Spielberg, Austria. (Photo by Joe Portlock - Formula 1/Formula Motorsport Limited via Getty Images)

With Isack Hadjar quickly moving his up the motorsport ladder, might he, like Max Verstappen, quickly leap from F3 to F1?

Eighteen-year-old French-Algerian driver Isack Hadjar has already been tipped by many to be a future Formula 1 star. Having only started his single-seater career in 2018, Hadjar has quickly found himself moving up through the feeder series’ as he sets his sights on Formula 1. With a history of promising young Red Bull drivers vaulting into the pinnacle of motorsport, could he be the next?

Nearly F3 Champion on Debut

Hadjar’s fourth-place finish in the 2022 F3 Championship doesn’t tell just how close the rookie came to winning. He had three wins and five podiums, finding himself Championship leader heading into the final rounds. But a disastrous finale in Monza saw Hadjar plummet four places in the standings. Overtaken by eventual champion Victor Martins, and fellow rookies Zane Maloney and Ollie Bearman. A season of what might have been, but clearly enough to take the next step. Following the race, Hadjar revealed in an interview with the French show Canal+ that he would be moving up to Formula 2 for the 2023 season.

The Next Red Bull Prospect

Earlier in the year, it was announced that Hadjar would become a member of the Red Bull Young Drivers Program. A program that saw Max Verstappen rise through the ranks from Toro Rosso (now Alpha-Tauri) to Red Bull.

Hadjar’s rise coincided with fellow academy drivers’ failure to meet Red Bull’s high expectations. Team Boss Helmut Marko has also allegedly expressed his disappointment with Formula 2 drivers Jehan Deruvula, Liam Lawson, and Juri Vips. Not only did they fail to win the title, but they also enter the final weekend 5th, 7th, and 10th respectively. It appears Marko has turned his attention to Hadjar as a potential for Alpha Tauri by 2024.

With only four years of single-seater experience under his belt, his quick rise has some resemblance to current Red Bull driver and reigning World Champion Max Verstappen. It should also be noted that like Verstappen, Hadjar has made the climb without having won a single-seater championship. However, Verstappen skipped Formula 2 to controversially step into Formula 1 at the age of seventeen.

Hadjar’s Formula 2 team is yet to be confirmed, but it’s expected he will be racing for Hitech GP. Back with the same team that he raced for in Formula 3, can he replicate his success from the 2022 season?