Red Bull racing was invincible in 2023. Barring a one-off race, the team emerged victorious in the rest of the 22 race rounds. Meanwhile, ahead of the impending 2024 season, the team’s drink-based outfit will further aim to solidify its dominance. However, it’s easier said than done owing to the lack of contribution from the second driver.
While Max Verstappen defended his championship title in 2023 comfortably, his teammate Sergio Perez struggled to match up to the Dutchman’s standards. He barely held on to his second place in championship standings as Lewis Hamilton missed out by a marginal difference. Thus, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner recently opened up on the possibility of a new partner for Verstappen at the end of the 2024 season.
Christian Horner Open To Consider Daniel Ricciardo For Second Red Bull Seat!
Red Bull Racing’s driving pair will undergo a significant change at the end of the 2024 season. While Max Verstappen is contracted through the next five years, Sergio Perez’s deal will last till the end of the upcoming F1 season. Moreover, with the kind of unprecedented challenge the Mexican driver faced in 2023, it is highly unlikely that the team will consider his retention. Speaking of replacements, Red Bull’s reserve driver, who was loaned to AlphaTauri in 2023, remains a front-runner. After being Verstappen’s teammate from 2016 to 2018, the Australian sought a change. However, his life came full circle as Daniel returned to the drink-based outfit earlier this year.
Not only that, Daniel Ricciardo earlier mentioned how he would love to have a fairy tale retirement with Red Bull. Meanwhile, team principal Christian Horner was asked to weigh his thoughts on an ideal teammate for Max Verstappen. He answered that as a team, the management would always want a competitive pair. While Checo has had a decent run for 2025, everything is on the table. “Daniel is well known to us. It’s great to have him back in the Red Bull fold, and of course, everything is open for 2025 onwards,” said Horner. Interestingly, Horner didn’t rule out external options. Previously, McLaren ace Lando Norris was deemed a perfect fit to be Max’s teammate. However, Lando wants to adhere to his contract and loyalty to McLaren in the future. Thus, for now, Ricciardo remains the front-runner to replace Perez at the end of the 2024 season.
“Checo’s Seat To Lose,” Horner On Perez’s Future!
After an abysmal 2023 season, rumors suggested that perhaps Sergio Perez won’t last to see another day in Red Bull, even though his contract runs through the 2024 season. However, team boss Christian Horner refuted the speculation. He said that the second seat at Bull’s is Checo’s seat for the 2024 season. But beyond that, it’s his seat to lose.
Christian Horner claimed that Perez will drive for Red Bull in 2024. The future beyond will solely depend on his performance and results. “If he does a great job next year, there is no reason we wouldn’t extend him into 2025,” said Horner. The team principal also revealed that Red Bull’s second seat has garnered a lot of attention from outside as well. However, for the time being, the team will respect Checo’s contract.