Horner: Still ‘plenty of time’ to decide Perez’s future
June 10, 2021
Christian Horner says Red Bull won’t rush one way or the other a decision on the future of Azerbaijan Grand Prix winner Sergio Perez.
Perez clinching his second career-win in F1 in Baku, seizing the lead after Max Verstappen’s unlucky retirement in the closing stages of the race and sealing his triumph in the final two-lap dash to the checkered flag.
Perez’s strong display in Azerbaijan where he qualified P6 followed a gradual improvement of his performance after a difficult start to his 2021 campaign with his new team.
Horner is closely monitoring his driver’s progress but insists its too early to decide whether Perez’s services will be retained by the Milton Keynes-based outfit next season.
“We still have plenty of time to answer that question,” Horner told the media in Baku. “But Sergio is doing a great job. He should just keep doing that.”
Horner admitted that he expected a good showing from Perez in Baku given his track record at the rapid street track. But the performance ultimately surpassed the Red Bull team boss’ expectations.
“We knew he was good around here but we didn’t know he was that good,” said Horner.
“He was quick all weekend. He was bang on the pace and the only mistake he made was in Q3 run one. His race pace was phenomenal.
“Had he not been longer at the pit-stop, he would have been right on top of Max with the overcut such was his pace in clean air. Phenomenal for him.
“The way he was defending from Lewis and controlling that was a class act.”
Read also: Perez ‘close to retiring’ before clinching Baku win
Horner reckons that Perez’s timely win will only help build his confidence.
“To see him get that victory will be great for his confidence. It puts him up to third in the Drivers’ Championship now. He’s ahead of expectations.”
“I think it’s an added string to our bow on a day that you lose your lead car that Checo’s right there to deliver the win. That’s exactly what we’ve been looking for.
“I’m delighted for him and pleased for the team with all the amount of effort that’s been going on behind the scenes. For all our partners as well. I think it’s everyone doing their bit and Checo being a part of that.”
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