Red Bull outline team orders strategy as Sergio Perez unsettles Max Verstappen

All of Sergio Perez's wins for Red Bull have come at street tracks, but he is hoping to challenge Max Verstappen more consistently.

Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko revealed that Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen were allowed to fight last weekend at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with the Austrians having not given the duo “any orders”.

Perez, of course, claimed victory from Verstappen, reducing the Dutchman’s championship lead to just six points ahead of this weekend’s Miami Grand Prix.

With the fight currently being so tight between the duo, Red Bull bosses have no intention to intervene, with Marko joking “no risk, no fun”.

“That means nervousness but also sportiness,” Marko told Sky Deutschland.

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“We didn’t give any orders – we just let them go.

“No risk, no fun,” Marko smiled.

Perez’s victory on Sunday did come under fortunate circumstances, with Verstappen having lost the race lead after pitting before the race’s only Safety Car was summoned.

Perez capitalised on the Safety Car and pitted whilst the race was neutralised, something which saw him inherit the race lead.

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In the 33-year-old’s defence, he did then drive beautifully, with Verstappen having had no answer to the Mexican’s pace.

Marko shared, though, that Verstappen was struggling with the balance of his car, with Perez having felt much more comfortable around the streets of Baku.

“He (Verstappen) never had the right balance with the car,” Marko insisted.

“In the middle sector he didn’t stand a chance against Perez.

“He was always losing three tenths to Checo especially in corner eight. It was only at the end when the settings were changed that he was happy with the car and also fast, but he couldn’t fight with him anymore.

“Max was also unlucky with the safety car and had to experiment with his settings to get the best out of it. But big compliments to Checo.

“He was fast right from the start, didn’t make any mistakes and drove a perfect race.”

READ: Did Lewis Hamilton deliberately hurt George Russell in Azerbaijan?

Despite Perez having beaten Verstappen for the second time this season, ex-F1 driver Ralf Schumacher doesn’t think he’s consistent enough to actually win the title this season, with the German believing that Perez is prone to mistakes when “under pressure”.

“But with a view to the world championship fight,” Schumacher said, “I don’t think he has the consistency of Verstappen.

“He sometimes makes a mistake under pressure when he’s not too happy with the car. Verstappen doesn’t make those mistakes and so I think he’ll be the better driver throughout the year.”