Sergio Perez’s Red Bull future not safe for 2024

Red Bull previously stressed that Sergio Perez's contract until the end of 2024 will be respected.

Formula 1 presenter and reporter Will Buxton believes Sergio Perez’s future at Red Bull during the 2024 season still isn’t safe, despite the Mexican having secured second in the Drivers’ Championship.

Perez successfully secured second in the standings last weekend after finishing third at the Las Vegas Grand Prix, which was won by Max Verstappen.

The Mexican driver actually drove very well in Sin City, after recovering from dropping to the back of the field on the opening lap.

He demonstrated excellent pace and even led the race briefly, before falling behind Charles Leclerc and Verstappen.

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However, after Verstappen overtook Leclerc for the lead, Perez also got past the Monegasque for second.

Unfortunately, Perez failed to block Leclerc on the last lap and ended up being overtaken in the final sector, ending Red Bull’s hopes of securing another 1-2 finish.

Whilst the Austrians didn’t manage a 1-2 on Las Vegas, they did secure a first-ever 1-2 in the Drivers’ Championship.

This is believed to have secured Perez’s seat for 2024, following significant speculation that he’d be dropped if he failed to finish second in the standings.

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It was rumoured that Daniel Ricciardo would take his place if he didn’t claim second, something the 33-year-old will have been relieved to have done.

However, according to Buxton, Perez could still lose his seat before the end of his contract, which expires at the conclusion of next season.

Buxton is certain that Ricciardo has been given a contract with AlphaTauri to “put pressure” on Perez, and to potentially replace him during the 2024 season if he struggles once again.

“No way. And for as long as Daniel’s [Ricciardo] sitting in that AlphaTauri he’s not going to be safe because the only reason Daniel’s there is to put pressure on him,” Buxton said on The Fast and the Curious Podcast, when asked by host Greg James if Perez’s seat is safe.

“And I think Red Bull have probably come to the realisation that the only driver who can replace Daniel is Daniel.

“If Daniel gets back to Daniel’s form of old, then they’ll stick him in the car next to Max [Verstappen] as they were the best driver line-up that they’ve had in terms of a two-driver team, I think ever.

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“And Daniel played really nicely with Max and Max looked up to and respected Daniel, I don’t think it would quite be the same now because Max has elevated himself to a level that’s beyond almost any driver in Formula 1.

“If Checo can’t maintain a consistent performance and that consistent performance has to be consistent P2s because that is the best car in the field.

“The minimum expectation for that car is P2 and if you’re not getting P2, then what are you doing? Why are you there? They will be asking those questions.”