Red Bull confirms second year of Perez deal not guaranteed


Christian Horner has clarified that Sergio Perez’s recently signed two-year extension with Red Bull offers the Milton Keynes-based outfit the flexibility to part ways with the Mexican driver at the end of 2025.

Ahead of last weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix, Red Bull confirmed that Perez had been awarded a new two-year contract that runs until the end of 2026, thus covering the first season of Formula 1’s next-generation engine and technical regulations.

The renewal was expected, even despite Perez’s recent slump that has kept him off the podium since last April’s Chinese Grand Prix.

However, it came to light in Montreal last weekend that Perez’s new deal only guarantees the six-time Grand Prix winner a single season of steady work with Red Bull.

This detail was revealed by Horner – perhaps inadvertently – when the Red Bull chief commented on Perez’s renewal but also on the extension offered to Visa Cash App RB’s Yuki Tsunoda.

“They are all Red Bull drivers,” Horner told Sky F1.

“We have decided to extend Checo for one more year, but in the meantime we also wanted to exercise the option of Yuki. He is doing great at RB at the moment. So yes, he will stay for another year.”

Later on, speaking to Swedish streaming service Viaplay, Horner clarified the terms of Perez’s agreement.

“Well, 1+1=2, so it’s a two-year contract,” the Briton confirmed. “As with any contract, there’s a lot in it, but that’s, of course, between the driver and the team.”

With Red Bull Racing’s line-up signed and sealed for 2025, and with Tsunoda’s tenure with RB now also locked in, Horner and Helmut Marko will turn their attention to the second seat at the Faenza-based outfit.

The word in the paddock is that Ricciardo’s situation with the team remains tenuous at best, although the Aussie did himself no harm by delivering in Canada his best race weekend of the year.

But it is rumored that if the 34-year-old can’t uphold his newfound form in the upcoming races, Red Bull is likely to replace Ricciardo with reserve driver Liam Lawson.

In any case, the Kiwi is in the running for a seat with RB in 2025. But if no materializes, he would then be free to leave the bulls and go his own way in F1.

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