Sergio Perez claims he has toughest job in F1 at Red Bull

The Mexican has spoken candidly about the pressure of racing for F1's reigning champions Red Bull

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Sergio Perez has claimed that driving for Red Bull is the toughest job in Formula 1, but insisted he is relishing the challenge of racing alongside Max Verstappen for the coming years after signing a new contract.

The Mexican recently penned a two-year extension to his contract, which will take him to the end of the 2026 season. That would take his association with Red Bull to six years, having joined in 2021 after leaving Racing Point – now known as Aston Martin.

Perez came under intense pressure to keep his seat on the F1 grid after wining just twice in 2023, while Verstappen dominated from the front and collected a record-breaking 19 victories in the RB19.

The Dutchman’s dominance has continued into this season, with Perez yet to record a race victory. He has also failed to qualify inside the top 10 at the last three races, highlighting his alarming slump, with team principal Christian Horner publicly urging him to improve his performances.

Sergio Perez on track during practice ahead of the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool
Sergio Perez on track during practice ahead of the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

And the 34-year-old has admitted that it is a difficult challenge and to consistently produce results in the team with such scrutiny placed upon him makes it the toughest job in F1.

“Yes, two more [years]… the truth is that it is an incredible challenge. It is a challenge, without a doubt, because it is the most difficult seat on the grid in every way,” Perez told Marca. “It’s a challenge weekend after weekend, but it’s something I really enjoy.”

Sergio Perez grateful for Red Bull faith

Both Daniel Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda had their sights set on being promoted from Red Bull’s sister team, Visa Cash App RB, before Perez agreed his new deal with the Austrian team. Many pointed to Tsunoda’s improvement as evidence that he should have replaced Perez, who has struggled for form since signing his deal.

However, the six-time race winner is grateful Red Bull decided to take a leap of faith and stuck to their guns, as he conceded that there were “many” drivers keen to take his seat with the constructors’ champions.

“In the end, the one that knows a lot about how I work, what I can give, is Red Bull. And there are many drivers who would give everything to be in my place,” Perez added. “For some reason Red Bull has decided to trust me.

In response to comparisons being made between himself and Verstappen and the rivalry that divided Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber, Perez added: “I think it is always very difficult to compare drivers at different stages, in different eras. I don’t think I’ve ever liked that.

“Comparing myself with other drivers… I’ll leave that to the experts, ex-drivers and journalists to do it. But in the end, I hope to continue winning championships together with Max and continue adding championships to the history of Red Bull.

Joe Krishnan
Joe Krishnan
Joe Krishnan is an NCTJ-qualified journalist who has worked for a number of media organisations, including the Daily Express, The Mirror, Evening Standard, The Independent and Bleacher Report. Joe has been following F1 since when he watched Mika Hakkinen clinch the 1999 drivers' championship, and his first taste of real-life racing action was watching David Coulthard spin off into the gravel at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in 2001.
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