Perez Signs New Two-Year Deal with Red Bull

Sergio Perez new Red Bull contract

Sergio Perez has secured his place at Red Bull until the end of 2026 after signing a new two-year contract with the Formula 1 team. Despite recent speculation that he might be replaced by Carlos Sainz, who became available following Lewis Hamilton’s decision to join Ferrari from 2025, Red Bull has opted for continuity.

Christian Horner, Red Bull’s team principal, emphasized the importance of stability, stating, “Continuity and stability are important for the team and both Checo and Max [Verstappen] are a successful and robust partnership.”

Perez’s recent performances have been under scrutiny, with finishes of fourth, eighth, and a crash in the first lap at Monaco after a disappointing 16th in qualifying. Horner acknowledged these challenges but expressed confidence in Perez’s ability to regain form. “The past few races have been tough, there is convergence on the grid, but we are confident in Checo and look forward to his return to proven form and performance, that we so often see,” he said.

Perez shared his enthusiasm about the contract extension, saying, “I am delighted to be staying here to continue our journey together. Being part of the team is an immense challenge and one I love. We have a great challenge this year and I have full trust in the whole team that the future is bright here, and I am excited to be part of it.”

While Max Verstappen has won three of the first four races and secured pole position at the first seven grands prix, Red Bull has faced stiff competition from McLaren and Ferrari in recent races. Verstappen’s dominance has waned slightly, with only one win in the past three races. Meanwhile, McLaren’s Lando Norris and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc have capitalized on Red Bull’s challenges.

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Perez has not won since the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in April 2023, despite Red Bull’s dominant season last year. He started this season strong, finishing second to Verstappen in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and Japan, but struggled when Verstappen retired in Australia, where Sainz won for Ferrari, and finished third in China before his recent slump.

Horner commented, “Last year was a unicorn season and we will need to work hard to retain our titles. But we are assured in our line-up and with the team as a whole, which is imperative in what is shaping up to be a close-fought championship this year.”

The decision to retain Perez leaves Carlos Sainz exploring other options, including offers from Sauber (set to become Audi’s works team in 2026) and Williams. Additionally, there are concerns that Red Bull might lose Verstappen in 2026. Mercedes is reportedly attempting to leverage allegations of sexual harassment and controlling behavior against Horner to lure Verstappen away. Although Horner denies the allegations and an initial investigation dismissed the complaint, the turmoil has led Adrian Newey, Red Bull’s chief technical officer, to negotiate an early end to his contract.

Newey, initially committed until the end of 2025, may join another team by March next year, influencing the design of their car for the new regulations in 2026. Verstappen, unsettled by the allegations and tensions within the team, has a contractual mechanism allowing him to leave Red Bull if motorsport adviser Helmut Marko departs. Marko has pledged to act in Verstappen’s best interest regarding his future.

While Verstappen is not expected to leave Red Bull for 2025, the possibility remains for 2026, adding another layer of uncertainty to the team’s future dynamics.

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