Disgruntled Christian Horner makes demand from Sergio Perez after ‘horrible’ Canadian GP

Sergio Perez has scored just two points in the last month at the Canadian, Monaco and Emilia Romagna GPs

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Christian Horner insisted Red Bull must see more from Sergio Perez after a total failure of a weekend at the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix where he was eliminated in Q1 and crashed out of the race for the second time in a row.

After qualifying 18th at Monaco and causing the incident that took out both Haas cars, Perez was rewarded with a Red Bull contract extension until the end of 2025, and celebrated that with arguably an even worse weekend in Montreal.

Perez once again lined up 16th on the grid and wasn’t in the points at any point in the race before he lost control at turn six under no pressure and slid backwards into the barriers as teammate Max Verstappen took the win.

“That was a horrible weekend for Checo and obviously we’ve picked up some damage so he’ll need to come back strong in Barcelona,” Horner told Sky Sports F1.

“I think what we’ve seen from him time and time again, you think he’s on the ropes and then he bounces back, he’s a tough racer, a tough character and I think it hurts him more than everybody else and he’ll be determined to come back and show everybody the form we know he’s capable of and showed in the first four races.”

Perez endured a similar rut in 2023, when he failed to reach Q3 in the all-conquering RB19 for five successive races starting with the Monaco GP and as Verstappen won 16 of the 17 grand prix from then until the end of the season, the Mexican finished with less than half his teammates’ points tally.

In the most dominant car in F1 history, Perez bounced back from his Monaco catastrophe by only finishing runner-up to Verstappen twice for the remainder of the campaign and scoring just one podium after the European leg of the season came to a close in Monza in early September.

Horner warns Red Bull can’t sustain Perez anchor

Sebastian Vettel and Sergio Perez talk in the Paddock ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix
Sebastian Vettel and Sergio Perez talk in the Paddock ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

The silver lining for Perez in Canada was that his disastrous showing didn’t affect Red Bull‘s championship ambitions. Ferrari entered the weekend 24 points behind in the constructors’ standings but failed to reach Q3 or finish the race with either car as Verstappen doubled his team’s advantage at the top.

However, McLaren and Mercedes both showed better race pace than the flying Dutchman at times in the grand prix in a sign that Red Bull‘s dominance of the current era of Formula 1 regulations could be coming to an end.

“The margins are fine but he knows what’s at stake,” Horner added. “We need him performing at the top of his game because the constructors, we’ve got three teams that are nipping at our heals and you’ve got to be firing on all cylinders

“Thankfully Ferrari had a shocker today so didn’t get any points, that let us off the hook somewhat but we need both cars scoring so we got away with it today but we need Checo back up there where he was at the beginning of the year, from Barcelona onwards.

“All these cars are going to be quick, particularly McLaren and Ferrari who we’re expecting to be right there and we’ll just take it one race at a time, that’s six out of nine that we’ve won so far and we’ll just keep pushing.

“The team are doing an incredible job and I think to bounce back after Monaco and get the win here, Max and the team are on great form.”

Adam Dickinson
An international multi-award-winning journalist, Adam Dickinson has written for Total-Motorsport.com since June 2022 and also contributes to TNT Sports, Eurosport and the Rugby Paper. He's also had articles published in the Daily Telegraph and several local newspapers, previously worked for Last-Lap.co.uk and FeederSeries.net in motorsport, and graduated with a First-Class Journalism Degree from the University of Sheffield having also studied in Oklahoma. Adam started watching F1 by accident in 2007, catching the last race in Indianapolis, and attended his first race as a journalist at the 2023 British Grand Prix.
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