Red Bull chief Christian Horner has 'unsustainable' dilemma to resolve with Max Verstappen to 'stay'

Red Bull chief Christian Horner has 'unsustainable' dilemma to resolve with Max Verstappen to 'stay'

WATCH NOW: Sports roundup as Christian Horner faces dilemma at Red Bull

Lewis Winter

By Lewis Winter

Published: 12/04/2024

- 16:06

The team principal has a decision to make over the future of his drivers

Ralf Schumacher says it is 'unsustainable' for Red Bull to keep Sergio Perez next season and also reckons Max Verstappen will stay.

There has been speculation over the future of Verstappen but it is his Mexican team-mate who former driver Schumacher reckons should leave at the end of the 2024 campaign.

Perez's contract at Red Bull expires later this year and he is unsure where he will be racing from the 2025 season.

He has finished second in three of the four races so far in this campaign, while he came fifth in Australia following Verstappen's early retirement.

Christian Horner and Max Verstappen

F1 news: Christian Horner has been told he faces an 'unsustainable' dilemma at Red Bull


Despite the three Red Bull 1-2s so far in 2024, Schumacher reckons Verstappen needs a new team-mate.

He claims there is a big difference in quality between the two current drivers for the reigning champions.
Schumacher told Sky in Germany: "If everything goes well, he can stay close to Max Verstappen.

"In the race, it is as if they are both from a different planet while they are in the same car. It is unsustainable for the team."

Mercedes are linked with Verstappen and reports claim they have approved a salary and bonus package for the three-time world champion.

The Silver Arrows are looking for a replacement for Lewis Hamilton, who will join Ferrari next year.

But Schumacher believes Verstappen will stay at Red Bull and has put forward Carlos Sainz's name as a replacement for Perez.

Sainz will leave Ferrari to make way for Hamilton. Schumacher added: "Carlos Sainz is available. There are also young drivers who are emerging, there is a lot happening on the market.

"At the moment I think Max Verstappen will stay, despite Mercedes hoping otherwise.

"I think Carlos Sainz has the best chance after the next race. Sainz is used to driving next to strong drivers and he knows that the Max Verstappen era must end at some point. He knows that.

"Sainz thinks he is the best driver, otherwise he wouldn’t be doing this. We shouldn’t underestimate how much racing intelligence he has.

"The only question I have is how he handles the [Red Bull] concept. We know that the car has a lot of understeer because Max Verstappen wants that."


Sergio Perez

F1 news: Sergio Perez is out of contract at Red Bull at the end of the season


Red Bull team principal Christian Horner played down talk of Perez's exit following the Japanese Grand Prix.

Horner claimed the 34-year-old has the power to keep his seat if he continues to impress.

"It's his seat to lose," he told Sky Sports.

"He's doing a great job, I mean he qualified within a tenth of a second yesterday, by far his best qualifying performance round here.

Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez

F1 news: Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez have finished 1-2 in three races this season


"And I think that you can see his confidence is growing and I think his performance in the race was very strong today.

"So his third second place of the year and doing everything that's needed of him."

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