Max Verstappen expects to be fighting for race wins and the Formula 1 world championship with Red Bull in 2018 in response to a luckless campaign marred with technical issues and retirements.

Verstappen suffered his seventh DNF of the season in Singapore two weeks ago when he tangled with Ferrari drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen at Turn 1, leaving him P6 in the championship and tied on points with Force India's Sergio Perez.

"It’s not my year in terms of Sunday finishes, but in general you have to try to stay positive and look at the positives," Verstappen said.

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"I think the speed is there so we try again here in Malaysia and see how competitive we are, it’s a bit difficult to say.

"But last year was pretty alright. We’ll just try again."

Verstappen has made his frustrations about Red Bull's lack of reliability clear this season, and stressed he needs to be fighting at the front of the pack in 2018, which is also the last year of his existing contract.

"For next year, the team and I, we want to win," Verstappen said.

"I think that’s our priority, and we’ll see what happens afterwards."

When asked to pin down a set target for next year, Verstappen said: "At least that we can fight for the championship. If you win one race and you win the championship that’s fine for me.

"But it’s a bit difficult to say as we are not in that position. Hopefully we are next year, but it’s a bit too early to say.

"So we’ll just have to wait and see until we go to Melbourne."

It has been suggested that Verstappen could leave Red Bull for Ferrari in 2019 should he endure another difficult season, but the Dutchman does not wish to pay too much attention to the far future.

"I don't want to look too much in the future. I just want to focus on the job I am doing now and try to finish it off in a good way this season, and then for next season I know where I am," Verstappen said.

"Before we finish next season is still such a long time. We just have to wait."