Perez poised to replace Albon at Red Bull for 2021 F1 season

Sergio Perez looks poised to secure a seat with Red Bull for the 2021 Formula 1 season, with an announcement set to be made on Friday

Perez poised to replace Albon at Red Bull for 2021 F1 season

Red Bull had vowed to make a swift decision about whether or not to stick with Alex Albon, after the Thai driver struggled to match team-mate Max Verstappen throughout the past season.

He did take podium finishes at the Tuscan and Bahrain grands prix, but he finished the campaign 109 points behind his Dutch team-mate.

Albon had faced difficulties getting on top of the tricky handling of the RB16 but had appeared to have made some progress over the final race weekend in Abu Dhabi.

But, amid growing indications that Red Bull felt its 2021 ambitions could be better served by opting for a proven more experienced driver like Perez, the team appears to have wasted little time in making its call.

The German Speedweek website, which is part of the portfolio of the Red Bull Media House, says that Perez has been chosen and that an official announcement by the team will be made on Friday.

The Dutch newspaper, De Telegraaf, which has close links to Verstappen, also reported on Thursday night that the Perez deal was done.

Red Bull was approached for comment on the reports but did not respond.

Perez had faced an uncertain future despite delivering his best season in F1, and securing his maiden victory at the Sakhir Grand Prix.

PLUS: The warning bells from Russell and Perez's Sakhir brilliance

The Mexican had been dropped for 2021 late in the campaign by Racing Point, which opted to replace him for next year with four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel.

With few options available elsewhere, Perez said it was more likely that he would take a complete sabbatical next year if he did not secure a full-time F1 race seat with Red Bull.

"There's only one option," he said in the closing stages of the season.

"I've said it before, I've been here for so many years.

"I want to keep going, I think I'm at the peak of my career.

"But I also want to keep going with a reason, with a plan, with a good project, so I think if there's not a good project that keeps my motivation to give 100%, I'd rather not take it.

"I think right now we're just waiting on the decision, what they decide to do. So that's out of my hands."

Should Albon not keep his F1 race seat, he is almost certain to be retained by Red Bull as a test and reserve driver.

shares
comments
Barcelona circuit to use new Turn 10 layout after safety changes

Previous article

Barcelona circuit to use new Turn 10 layout after safety changes

Next article

Vettel calls Leclerc "the most talented" F1 driver he's seen

Vettel calls Leclerc "the most talented" F1 driver he's seen
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Sergio Perez , Alex Albon
Teams Red Bull Racing
Author Jonathan Noble
The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Plus

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. BEN ANDERSON looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Plus

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes Plus

The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Bahrain Grand Prix despite, for a change, not having the quickest car. But any hopes of developing its W12 to surpass Red Bull's RB16B in terms of outright speed could not have come at a worse time.

Formula 1
Apr 2, 2021