The Private Jets Of Formula One

The Private Jets Of Formula One

Fri 22 Mar 2024

The Private Jets Of Formula One

Many drivers have owned private jets over the years.

Max Verstappen and Fernando Alonso are currently the only Formula One drivers known to own private jets, with Verstappen owning a Dassault Falcon 900EX and Alonso owning a Dassault Falcon 900C.
Other drivers, including Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris, often hitch rides with Verstappen to and from races due to their close proximity in Monaco.
Lewis Hamilton used to own a Bombardier Challenger 605 jet but sold it in 2019 to align with his sustainability values, while Michael Schumacher owned a Dassault Falcon 2000EX before his accident and his wife sold it later. Niki Lauda, before his passing, was also a private jet owner, including a Bombardier Global 5000.

Traveling fast often becomes a way of life - be that on the ground or in the air. If adding to that, you travel away from home and all over the world for the better part of the year, it makes sense that you would want as efficient a means of transportation as possible. As such, it comes as no surprise that over the years, several Formula One drivers have opted for private jets. With environmental concerns ever more important, ownership is less than it once was, however. Plenty of drivers will charter aircraft to head to races - but currently, only two drivers are known to own private jets.

Max Verstappen's Dassault Falcon 900EX
One of the most famous jets out there belongs to the current Formula One world champion - Max Verstappen. The Red Bull Racing number one driver owns a Dassault Falcon 900EX operated by Dutch private jet charter company.

This trijet, registered as PH-DTF, has a maximum range of 4,725 nautical miles and a top speed of 893 kph. He bought it from none other than Virgin boss Richard Branson in 2020, reportedly spending €13 million ($14 million).

Verstappen regularly offers other drivers, including Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris, a lift to and from the races. As many of the F1 drivers live in Monaco, it makes for convenient ride-sharing.

Fernando Alonso's Dassault Falco 900C
According to, Spanish driver Fernando Alonso is the only other driver to currently own a private jet. Alonso is the oldest driver in the championship currently, having left twice to keep coming back. He also owns a three-engine Dassault Falcon 900 aircraft (with registration EC-JNZ).

While these two may be the only drivers to have their own jet currently, many more will use private jets to get to races. Chartering as you go is becoming increasingly popular with VIPs and celebrities - not just for cost benefits but to help with environmental impact and image. The video below shows plenty of drivers departing from the Belgium and Dutch Grand Prixs in 2022 by private jet.

Sir Lewis Hamilton sold his jet in 2019
Meanwhile, seven-time world champion and Mercedes driver Sir Lewis Hamilton used to own a Bombardier Challenger 605, registered as G-LCDH (Lewis Carl Davidson Hamilton). However, the recently knighted Hamilton sold the burgundy bird back in 2019 to better live up to his own sustainability standards. Hamilton's dog, a bulldog named Roscoe (he used to have two, but Coco sadly passed away in 2020), still apparently flies private from time to time, according to the pup's social media accounts.

Michael Schumacher and his legendary M-IKEL
Another legend with the same number of titles as Sir Lewis, Michael Schumacher, also had a private jet. Before his tragic skiing accident in the French Alps, the German driver owned a silver eight-seat Dassault Falcon 2000EX. Reportedly, it flew for an astonishing 300 to 400 hours per year while he was still driving. It was registered as M-IKEL and had the initials MS stamped on its tail. His wife sold the jet a few years ago.

Niki Lauda
A familiar Formula One/aviation name is Andreas Nikolaus ‘Niki’ Lauda. Before his passing in 2019, the former racing driver and entrepreneur was an influential force across the board. Along with the founding of various aviation enterprises, he was also a fan of private jets. The racing legend was one of the first people in the world to own a Bombardier Global 5000 aircraft but also owned other jets (including a Global 6000).

Transporting the cars
Jets also play a crucial part in this ground sport in the broader sense. DHL has been teaming up with Formula One for approximately four decades to ensure cars and parts are smoothly delivered across the continents. The shipping specialist uses its planes based in Munich and London to fly 1,400 tons of equipment from one GP to the next.

What are your thoughts about the private jets of Formula One drivers? These things change quickly, so let us know about any other jet ownerships or regular usage you know of.