Nico Rosberg blasts Sergio Perez

Former world champion Nico Rosberg has suggested Red Bull faces a dilemma over Sergio Perez's future as he falls behind Max Verstappen.

2016 Formula 1 Champion Nico Rosberg has expressed his disappointment with Sergio Perez’s performance in the 2023 Formula 1 season, claiming that Perez has “disappointed the fans” and made it “too easy” for his Red Bull teammate, Max Verstappen. 

Perez’s season began on a high note as he secured victories in two of the first four races, briefly closing the gap between him and Verstappen in the Drivers’ Championship to just one point. 

However, Perez’s performance took a significant downturn afterward, with no race victories since and multiple disappointments in qualifying, failing to progress to Q3 on eight occasions. 

This has caused him to fall a substantial 209 points behind Verstappen, who clinched the title with five races to spare in Qatar.

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The Mexican driver’s recent struggles have raised concerns about his future with Red Bull, and some have suggested he might be at risk of losing his seat. 

Rosberg, while expressing sympathy for Perez, pointed out the predicament Red Bull now faces regarding their driver lineup, even proposing Alex Albon as a potential replacement. 

In an interview with the Sky Sports F1 podcast, Rosberg emphasised the pressure on Red Bull:“First of all, I feel sympathy for him. It’s horrible to be in his situation. Now he is facing a lot of pressure, and everyone on social media is criticising him. 

“Qatar was another very bad weekend. Red Bull really needs to think carefully about its position. 

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“It’s a big headache for Red Bull because the team needs two good drivers. 

“Sergio is not really performing to the best of his abilities. I don’t understand how it’s so far from that. 

“Maybe it’s because Verstappen is so spectacular, but still, the gap is too big.”

Rosberg further noted the disappointment of Formula 1 fans, who were hoping for more excitement from Perez: “Formula 1 fans were looking for a bit of excitement in him. 

“He disappointed the fans in a way because he made it too easy for Verstappen.”

Acknowledging the recent difficulties he has faced, Perez is determined to return to his best form as he heads into the United States Grand Prix, which marks the beginning of a triple-header. 

Perez spent the break between races working closely with his engineers at Red Bull’s Milton Keynes base to address his recent performance issues. In anticipation of the upcoming races, Perez shared his optimism:

“I’m looking forward to the next few weeks of racing. 

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“Austin and Mexico are two of my favourite weeks of the year, and I have such incredible support in both places, and that means a lot to me. 

“Even when you can’t hear it in the car, you can feel it. 

“I know I have to get back to my best at COTA; it’s a fun circuit to drive, and I am confident we can perform there.”