Looks like Red Bull driver Sergio Perez is in deep trouble with his Red Bull contract. Apparently, he could not capitalize on a great start to the season and won a couple of races after the first four Grand Prix races in 2023. Everybody thought it would be a great battle between the Red Bull drivers this season. However, the expectations did not live long as Max Verstappen showed why he is the most dominant racer in modern times.
The Dutchman went on to win eight consecutive races. On the other hand, Sergio Perez had a terrible crash in the Monaco Grand Prix. According to Checo, that crash in Monte Carlo messed things up for him this season. Moreover, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff points out the shocking exit of Nyck De Vries from Alpha Tauri after only ten races. The billionaire executive hints that the exit of De Vries might have been an ultimatum for Checo as well. Red Bull might replace Perez with the Aussie soon, just like they did with Nyck De Vries.
Toto Wolff Fuels Rumors Of Daniel Ricciardo Replacing Sergio Perez
De Vries has been a Formula E Champion for Mercedes and also was a reserve driver of the Mercedes F1 team. Hence, Wolff is not happy with how Red Bull treated the Dutchman. The Austrian team did not waste any time to replace De Vries with Daniel Ricciardo. Toto Wolff feels his rivals could have given him a little more time. On the other hand, Wolff believes this sudden exit of De Vries was a result of the poor performance of Sergio Perez. Moreover, Checo’s contract will expire after the end of the next season. Wolff feels perhaps it was a way to evaluate Daniel Ricciardo if he can replace Sergio Perez in the meantime.
There were speculations regarding Ricciardo replacing Perez at some point. But Mercedes boss fuels the rumor after the exit of Nyck De Vries. On the other hand, Sergio Perez is confident that he is a winner and can turn things around. He believes there is enough support for him in the Red Bull camp. Speaking to the media, Checo said he is going through a bit of a rough patch. Mainly, the recent changes to RB19 caught Checo off guard a little bit. After the Monaco crash, these changes were necessary. Hence, Sergio Perez must fight through a lot of pressure and obstacles if he wants to stay with Red Bull and win a title.
Pressure Building As Checo Failed To Live Up To The Expectations
Fans expected Sergio Perez to do well in Monaco because he proved that he was very good in the sprint format. After all, he won the Azerbaijan Grand Prix this year. He became the only driver to win a couple of races in Baku, Azerbaijan. But Checo could not hold on to this great form and start. Since the Monaco Grand Prix, he faded away from the title contention. Sergio Perez had a few eliminations in Q3 sessions.
At present, fans wonder how Max is doing so well in RB19 when Checo, with the same car, has not been able to find a win since the race in Baku. Moreover, tensions are growing in the Red Bull camp. As the current contract of Sergio Perez suggests, if the Mexican is unable to finish within 125 points gap from Max Verstappen, they won’t pay him the stipulated money. Under the current contract, Red Bull pays Checo a base salary of 8 million pounds. But the Dutch news outlet reports that Perez can face financial consequences if he is unable closer the gap with his teammate.