Red Bull Content as Sergio Perez Relinquishes Pursuit of Beating F1 Rival Max Verstappen

The fact that Sergio Perez has given up on trying to defeat teammate Max Verstappen makes Red Bull CEO Helmut Marko very happy.

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With four victories from the first five Grands Prix of the new season, the Dutchman has maintained his dominant form. Additionally, Perez, a teammate, has shown improvement in his form, as evidenced by his four podium appearances thus far.

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If the Mexican wants to maintain his place, he must exhibit this kind of form. His contract with Red Bull ends at the end of the year, and he entered the new campaign against the odds due to his lackluster performance in the previous one.

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But Perez’s lack of comments over his desire to defeat Verstappen has coincided with his return to form. Furthermore, Red Bull super adviser Marko is happy to see that the 34-year-old is no longer overworking himself.

“What I’m happy about is that Sergio Perez is showing stronger performances in this first part of the season than he did a year ago,” the Austrian stated in his Speedweek column. Checo no longer enters the race believing he would defeat Max no matter what.

“By this, I also mean that he nearly insisted on voting for himself in 2023 if the pace wasn’t appropriate. So he attempted to use a different setup and a technological approach to come closer to Max. He’s abandoned that.

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“In terms of voting, Perez is currently following Verstappen’s lead rather closely. Compared to 2023, he loses less time and performs noticeably better, particularly in the qualification.

“There’s not much to be upset about in the races either; if not for the mistimed safety car phases, he most likely would have been second in China. However, he is less able to take advantage of his tyre whispering abilities when he is caught in traffic. He had to move forward instead, and the tyres are generally where it all ends.”

Perez’s position isn’t safe just yet. Red Bull believes there’s no need to rush their decision and they do not want to commit to the 34-year-old for an extended period of time. The Mexican stated earlier this month that a renewal was only weeks away and that they hoped to agree on a new multi-year contract.

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Given his current outstanding performance, a one-year extension offer seems plausible. However, Red Bull might decide to take a different approach in 2026, and they are considering bringing back former driver Alex Albon because they are pleased with his excellent performance since joining Williams.