Jun.20 - Even with a brand new contract in his back pocket, Sergio Perez's future remains uncertain.

Initially, it was thought his new deal - signed very recently despite a performance slump - was for two guaranteed years.

But team consultant Dr Helmut Marko admitted that it contains "certain clauses", while boss Christian Horner described it as a one-plus-one deal, implying that Perez staying at Red Bull beyond 2025 is merely an option.

And now, Marko has told Osterreich newspaper that the intention of the mid-season contract extension has not resulted in the desired outcome of giving Perez a confidence - and performance - boost.

"We extended his contract because we wanted to bring calm to our team," said the 81-year-old, "which unfortunately didn't quite work out.

"But now Checo has three races ahead of him on three real race tracks to prove himself."

It's an ominous message for the 34-year-old, especially with Marko also recently admitting that McLaren's driver lineup of Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri is superior to Red Bull's.

"Well, that's the way it is," Marko now says. "They (Norris and Piastri) are young and are always very close together, especially in qualifying. And both will improve, especially Piastri."

A new and wild rumour is that, with the possibility of a shock Mercedes switch for Max Verstappen still not ruled out, Red Bull might agree to a seat swap with Toto Wolff's 17-year-old protege Kimi Antonelli.

"Antonelli is an absolute Mercedes man," Marko insists, "so we don't need to think about that."

Another rumour is that Verstappen could pair with Antonelli at Mercedes from the start of the new regulations cycle in 2026, endangering the career of George Russell.

"That is still so far away," Marko said. "Let's concentrate on the next races and see if we can win the world championship again.

"Our biggest advantage is that the other teams are taking points away from each other, and I hope it continues like that."

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2 F1 Fan comments on “Perez Faces Three Races to Prove His Red Bull Future

  1. Jere Jyrälä

    Once again, a straight 2-year deal, as mentioned in the announcement statement, while Horner merely said ''1+1 is 2'' as an initial answer before clarifying the actual 2-year reference.
    Of course, driver contracts generally are terminatable through clauses or whatever, but this is true regardless of length form.


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