Sergio Perez explains impact of Max Verstappen Mercedes rumors on Red Bull

Max Verstappen is said to be willing to quit the Red Bull team if Helmut Marko departs

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Red Bull’s upper management are in a midlife crisis as the Christian Horner scandal rages on and it could even cost them Max Verstappen, who may leave for Mercedes if Helmut Marko’s time at Red Bull ends. But for Sergio Perez, he’s uninterested and insists the team are still united in the face of the ongoing unrest.

The Mexican is currently enjoying a solid start to the 2024 Formula 1 season after finishing in second place at the Bahrain Grand Prix and the Saudi Arabian GP, although his teammate has won both races from pole position.

The Red Bull RB20 is clearly the class of the field once again taking two poles, two wins, four podiums, a grand slam and one fastest lap in the latest season as nobody can get anywhere near it on race day.

“I think the team is in a very strong position,” Perez said to media ahead of the 2024 Australian GP. “With the results we’re currently having, the harmony there is in the team, and I think to achieve that takes a lot of years.

“Right now, the dynamics? Everyone in the team is working really well together. The whole engineering group is really united, and you can see that on track and how efficient we’ve been in the last year.

“So, I think I don’t see any reason to change it, but it will obviously be a big blow for the team if Max were to leave.”

Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner and Max Verstappen talk in the Paddock ahead of 2024 Australian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool
Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner and Max Verstappen talk in the Paddock ahead of 2024 Australian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Perez not interested in Verstappen’s contract

If Marko, Red Bull’s outspoken special advisor, is made to quit or leaves, Verstappen is said to have a clause in his contract that means he can walk away from the team too, which is something he reminded them about when it appeared Marko could be suspended.

And at the moment, Verstappen stands between Perez and a very good shot at becoming the first ever Mexican F1 world champion, so one might expect him to personally be attempting to drive the Dutchman from Milton Keynes to Brackley as he is linked with Mercedes.

But Perez, aged 34, is playing a different game and is staying out of the brewing political storm between the team and their lead driver as he said the situation has “nothing to do with me,” when asked what he thinks about such a clause existing.

“I don’t have that clause and I don’t know what clause Max has in his contract,” Perez added. “I think it’s best you ask him, and I think Max, as far as I know, has a contract with the team and it’s fully committed.

“I think it’s not for me to comment. It’s nothing to do with me. I’m focusing on my decisions on what I have to do, and I think for us to be talking about other drivers when we don’t know any facts, I don’t see any point in doing so.”

Brandon Sutton
Brandon is an alumni of an NCTJ and BJTC Liverpool John Moores University course, and has been with Total-Motorsport.com for over a year now. He enjoys covering all forms of motorsport but particularly focuses on Formula 1, and Brandon loves to debate various topics of the sport and other interests, especially if that topic doesn't have an open/shut answer such as the GOAT debate.
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