Red Bull expected to announce Perez as Verstappen’s team mate for 2021

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In the round-up: Red Bull are expected to imminently announce Sergio Perez as Max Verstappen’s team mate for the 2021 F1 season.

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Comment of the day

McLaren’s unusually harmonious team mate relationship between Carlos Sainz Jnr and Lando Norris is over – and the team in a very different position to how they ended 2018. Michael notes their partnership was extremely constructive, both for the team and their careers:

I think the Sainz/Norris duo proved what a team can achieve when two drivers work in concert to improve the team as a whole, especially a team like McLaren which seems to have lost its way massively.

Usually when two drivers perform almost equally, it tends to hurt both drivers as we’ve seen with Algersuari/Buemi and Magnussen/Grosjean in the past where both drivers end up losing their drives permanently.

The expectation was that Sainz was the more experienced driver who could deliver better results while Norris is the rookie finding his way within the team and matching or exceeding Sainz’s results. I think they both lived up to their expectations.

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On this day in F1

  • On this day in 1991 George Abecassis died. He made two F1 starts, both in the Swiss Grand Prix at Bremgarten in the fifties.

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131 comments on “Red Bull expected to announce Perez as Verstappen’s team mate for 2021”

  1. What exactly fuel made from bio waste are? Fat from liposuction clinics?

    They want to demonstrate that the technology works but tries to avoid any scrutiny with fancy words.

    1. @ruliemaulana Bio waste is not limited to animal products but include anything plant-based as well, in fact primarily so. For example twigs, leaves/needles and bark leftover when the usable wood has been extracted from a tree. Other sources include algae and all sorts of agricultural waste. Basically, any carbon-based life form can be rendered into a liquid fuel through various processes. Plants take CO2 from the atmosphere, brakes it apart through photosynthesis, uses the C as building material for itself and releases the O back into the atmosphere. The carbon from the plant can then be turned into fuel, burned in an engine together with oxygen and released back to the atmosphere as CO2 again. And so on. As long as the plants are growing fast enough for the demand of fuel and processed using renewable energy, it would be completely sustainable long term. Why so negative about it?

      1. Well, you just proved that when there’s no detail of the process, people tend to make it up how.

        1. Or you could have simply said ‘thank you’ after Robert took the effort to give you a detailed explanation based on your question/doubt.

          1. Jose Lopes da Silva
            18th December 2020, 11:05

            How is that? ruliemaulana didn’t want explanations. He did not set up a debate. He just wanted to shoot. Why would he thank the shoot back of Robert?
            Now imagine that everyone would start replying like Robert. What would people like ruliemaulana do?

          2. How is this not a question/doubt, Jose Lopez la Silva?

            What exactly fuel made from bio waste are?

            Robert did a great job (as did others) in replying that question believing that it was genuine.

          3. Jose Lopes da Silva
            18th December 2020, 12:51

            But it’s not genuine. 95% of these occasions, it’s not genuine. Robert did an excellent job, but he should never expect a thank you after shooting a good argument against a troll argument.

        2. Go and research. You won’t learn about it all from a website post!

    2. @ruliemaulana: Coal. It is vintage plant matter that spent eons preparing for F1. When the 2026 engine formula is finalized, don’t be surprised to see a design originally created by James Watt.

      ;-)

      1. @jimmi-cynic Yep. CNLHGC™. Carbon Neutral Liquid Hydrogen from Gasified Coal fuel.

        1. You miss an important part of true green power sources as explained above.
          A power source is only ‘green’ if any CO2 released through burning it is captured as fast or faster. Fossil fuels do not deliver against that unless you only run a single toy steam engine.

          1. important part of true green power sources

            Why you make this as guessing game @coldfly? If you really knew what kind of bio-waste used by FIA just said it so. That PR speak is useless.

          2. I won’t share what I don’t know, @ruliemaulana. When it appears you should read my earlier comment in this (https://www.racefans.net/2020/12/18/racefans-round-up-18-12-3/#comment-4568641); I opinion that FIA is making a mistake here.

            I do know though that fossil fuels cannot be considered green for the reasons others and I shared: they are based in organic materials, but the process of burning it is faster than creating them. Thus it causes a net increase in greenhouse gasses on earth.

    3. Just think of bio waste as exactly that – what the garbage collectors bring in as Bio waste. Hard to define because it includes garden waste, it included what food restaurants and supermarkets throw away (minus plastics, paper, glass off course). And it can include waste from crops, like the leaves and stems of all sorts of crops we eat (tomatoes, onions, potatoes, carrots, etc).

      It’s fine that it works, if it does. It is certainly a step forward from making bio fuels from crops that could just as well just be used to feed people or animals. Or are grown on lands that could grow crops for that purpose, or on lands that could have been forrests.

      The biggest issue will be that the amount of bio-waste is quite unlikely to be enough to fuel a large part of all vehicles we want to power.

      1. issue will be that the amount of bio-waste is quite unlikely to be enough

        This. This already happen when wood chip categorized as renewables. When leftover wood across county dry down they starting to cut trees. In simple words, sometime idea is just not sustainable.

        1. @ruliemaulana wood chips are completely renewable. Cut it down, grow it again. Cut it down, grow it again.

          It’s a remarkably simple way to capture carbon and turn it into something else. And sustainable, because you can plant the same number of trees you’re cutting down. Basic math.

    4. I can’t speak Swahili. That means that Swahili language doesn’t exist, and in case it somehow does exist, obviously nobody speaks the language because I can’t. This is your logic. It’s easier talking nonsense than actually reading a book or two, or at least some detailed article on the subject. If you’re ignorant (and we all about not just some, but most of things), learn to appreciate the knowledge offered; especially if you don’t offer anything useful in return.

      1. What is that even mean? If you knew nothing don’t answer people who really had interest on the subject.

  2. I will be seriously amused if Perez does join Red Bull and also ends up qualifying 4-5 tenths behind Verstappen on average.

    People will soon realize that Gasly and Albon are actually not slow drivers, but Verstappen is just freakishly fast.

    (Gasly in particular is a very talented driver. You don’t win GP2 at the age of 20 unless you have serious talent)

    1. No red bull throw all their support to max and give him all the attention and best set ups. They are trying to hype max up and make him look better then he really is

      1. Why would they not want both their cars to do well?

        1. To support the conspiracy theories of the most annoying Ricciardo fan.

          1. Jose Lopes da Silva
            18th December 2020, 12:58

            If only he was alone. There are countless people out there thinking that Red Bull is favoring Verstappen because the parent company is partially Thai owned and sponsored…
            …oh no, this doesn’t fit. Wait. It’s because ‘the youngest champion ever’ – yes, a major headline, a big boost for the brand having the youngest champion ever. Even as a conspiracy, this is so meek.
            Likely Verstappen has compromising pictures of Horner and Mateschitz. There must be something!

      2. @carlosmedrano Yeah, what do Red Bull have to gain from having two quick cars? Not like there is a constructors championship or something.

      3. @carlosmedrano – At least he hasn’t turned his back on his team yet, despite all preferential treatment. ;)

      4. @carlosmedrano
        ” and make him look better then he really is”

        And he really is:
        A: Faster than Daniel.
        B: A lot faster than Daniel.
        C: Superior to Daniel in every department.
        D: All of the above.

        Your tears feel so good man, I really hope you keep on crying and whingeing like the little baby that you are for years to come. :)

        https://www.racefans.net/2017/12/01/2017-f1-team-mate-battles-verstappen-vs-ricciardo-at-red-bull/

        https://www.racefans.net/2018/12/06/2018-team-mates-battles-verstappen-vs-ricciardo-at-red-bull/

        https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/article.power-rankings-which-driver-ranked-highest-in-abu-dhabi-and-who-topped-the.3zKXNx6bVIBpT0D1GCc3Fl.html

        https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/article.revealed-f1s-team-bosses-choose-their-top-10-drivers-of-2020.2z5yo7av41tQC3MrzeFNa3.html

        But the earth is flat……loooooool

      5. Maybe take a look at Max’s karting career and who he beat during those years. Maybe look into what other drivers (ex-teammates) and ex F1 drivers say about Max. Maybe listen to all of his former team bosses, or the current F1 team bosses that voted him 2nd best after Lewis for the 5th year straight…

        Sometimes it’s just time to get your head out of your **s and see the reality: Max is freakishly fast, in every category, on every track, right from the get go…The guy has been living, dreaming, breathing and training racing since he was 5 with better than most support and a harder more critical teacher than any other F1 driver… Given the right material only a couple of drivers stand a chance, given equal equipment I would say maybe 3 would have a shot at actually beating him… He really is that good. No matter what haters like you think.

    2. @kingshark

      I wouldn’t be shocked if Perez gets outqualified by 3 to 4 tenths on a regular basis. Qualifying isn’t Perez’s strength, and we’ve seen both Hulkenberg and Ocon get the better of Sergio on Saturdays. I don’t think he’d lose all the qualifying battles during a season to Max like Gasly and Albon did. But you’re right… he wouldn’t be a match for Max in quali.

      I would however, be shocked if Perez fails to finish in front of midfield runners on Raceday. Given his experience, he seems to maximise his raceday pace through clever tyre management and error free drives. He will have more top 5 finishes than Albon and Gasly, and should have a points tally closer higher than either of his predecessors.

      1. Or even top 4 finishes which Red Bull is targeting for. I think the hiring is done as the newpaper who brought it is Red Bull owned. Also a reporter of the Telegraaf made it public and that one never bring stories unless he has strong prove for it.

      2. Can’t agree more. That is exactly what RB needs and wants. Perez won’t be a match for Verstappen in pure pace (in fact I think no one is, maybe Lewis, but even he will struggle keeping up), but if Perez can stay in the pit window of the top 3, next year will be all to play for. Races like Hungary 2019 will be a victory for Verstappen, because Mercedes can play their tactics anymore.

        1. I think Leclerc would probably be a match for Verstappen in qualifying, although he would struggle to keep up in the races. Hamilton, on the other hand, would probably be a bit behind both of them on Saturday, but would rise to the top on a Sunday and still win the championship. (This is assuming equal cars for all three).

      3. Perez has everything in him to be Verstappen’s second. He’ll win a few races, get on the podium, and he’ll be asked to move over when Verstappen is behind him on track. That’s the role Red Bull needs. Verstappen is their Lewis, Perez could and should be their Bottas.

        Albon wasn’t .4s behind Verstappen anyways, he was on average over 0.5s behind Verstappen. In races it didn’t take Verstappen more than 10% of a race distance to put 10s of seconds between him and Albon. That’s the kind of pace deficit I’m convinced Perez won’t be showing. You won’t see Verstappen winning races while lapping his teammate like happened with Gasly either.

        Wether Albon or Gasly are quick drivers or not doesn’t matter. What matters is they don’t perform when it matters, it’s that simple. You can pile that on Red Bull as much you want, at the end of the day, the driver has responsibility for their performance compared to their teammate. Perez has shown he can handle pretty much anyone they’ve thrown at him and he didn’t exactly have the worst of teammates before Stroll, either. He can be a good Bottas equivalent for Red Bull.

      4. Perez has everything in him to be Verstappen’s second. He’ll win a few races, get on the podium, and he’ll be asked to move over when Verstappen is behind him on track. That’s the role Red Bull needs. Verstappen is their Lewis, Perez could and should be their Bottas.

        Albon wasn’t .4s behind Verstappen anyways, he was on average over 0.5s behind Verstappen. In races it didn’t take Verstappen more than 10% of a race distance to put 10s of seconds between him and Albon. That’s the kind of pace deficit I’m convinced Perez won’t be showing. You won’t see Verstappen winning races while lapping his teammate like happened with Gasly either.

        Wether Albon or Gasly are quick drivers or not doesn’t matter. What matters is they don’t perform when it matters, it’s that simple. You can pile that on Red Bull as much you want, at the end of the day, the driver has responsibility for their performance compared to their teammate. Perez has shown he can handle pretty much anyone they’ve thrown at him and he didn’t exactly have the worst of teammates before Stroll, either. He can be a good Bottas equivalent for Red Bull.

      5. Yep–i don’t think Perez would overall out qualify Max, but i can see him getting the better of Max a couple of times in Q3. Max will soundly beat him in overall qualy, but it wouldn’t be the complete whitewash that we saw with Albon

    3. @kingshark
      I expect Max to have the upper hand in qualy. But I think Perez will give Verstappen alot to think about in the races. Across a season Max will be too much- but I don’t think it will be a cake walk for Max like it has been with Albon and Gasly. Also I disagree strongly with your assessment on both Albon/Perez. When Max had a competitive team mate in Danny Ric, he didn’t look freakishly fast. But Albon and Gasly can’t even get to within a tenth of Verstappen in qualy when Danny Ric often did (and often beat Max). Albon and Gasly also struggled to finish on the same lap nevermind straight when again, Danny Ric managed. So sorry, Albon and Gasly are not top tier drivers.

    4. They get Perez to validate their car design either way. Too many times was Albon down in the mid-pack.

    5. In the event RB does something so dumb as to hire Perez, yes, he’ll be .4 away. I largely agree with King and Spa but I don’t think Gasly would do any better than last time around. I don’t think Gasly wants to end his career for good, he is foolish to think he has improved, kvyat was very, very slow.

    6. Well, Gasly was almost beaten by Giovinazzi.

      1. My previous comment was reply to @kingshark

  3. I expect Perez his reputation to shrink real quick when he has to go up against Verstappen. Overall, this season, he had a car that was the quickest behind the Mercedes. He finished on the podiums a few times, and he should have. In fact, I think Max would had finished on the podium much more frequently than Perez if he had driven that RP. Perez won Bahrain because he had the 2nd fastest car and Mercedes blew it. Otherwise, with the safety car, it was more than reasonable to expect him to finish 3rd from the back. We have seen Lewis and Seb doing this in the past too.

    I honestly expect that Perez his hype is built on thin air (blown by Sky Sports) and he is not in anyway able to live up to expectations. Max will crush him and in the process expose all of his weaknesses. I don’t think at all that Perez would do any better than Gasly would do in that 2nd Red Bull. It is a shame to the Red Bull academy to be honest that Perez is likely to be chosen over Gasly, whom proved this year to have grown a lot as a racing driver. What is the point of your academy still?

    1. If tyre managing matters, Perez shines. If not, he is not there. Even though Pirelli’s tyres adapt quite well to his driving style, he is slow. The main evidence is his lack of speed during qualifying… well, unless tyres are prone to suffer overheating during the qualifying lap… I can not remember any outstanding Saturday performance from him to be honest. Hamilton, Verstappen, Leclerc Ricciardo, Vettel, Norris, all of them have demonstrated some speed at qualy.

      In some way, Perez is one of the drivers more benefited from Pirelli’s high-degradation tyres decade, however, he is not fast enough to be world champion. He will be fast enough to help Redbull win the championship?. I doubt it if Pirelli tyres are not so troublesome next year.

      1. @jamt – You know, that’s a good point, since another good tyre manager, Vettel, is top notch at qualifying. Though, I don’t think Verstappen is that good on Saturdays. I mean, he is fast, put in good flying laps and can even dominate a team mate but he never stroke me as a Vettel, a Hamilton or a Leclerc. He is more like an Alonso. So I’d say Checo has a chance, if he raise his game a bit, which he has to do anyway, because this won’t be midfield anymore.

        1. What arguments do you have to assume Max is not that strong in qualifying?

    2. I don’t think anyone has won the race after being in the Pits from a lap 1 inscident, with and older engine. Perez never been in a top car however the moment he got a competitive car he was on top consistently and even won a race and got 4th WDC, so if he gets a red bull most likely will do even better.

      1. Indeed, I don’t understand all these downers about perez: albon and gasly might be good midfield drivers but they’re NOT suited to a top car, who does that remind you of? Fisichella? Frentzen? In the midfield they were so good, but give them a top car and who saw them? There’s no reason perez wouldn’t be able to drive a top car.

        1. @esploratore – well, don’t forget Perez was not suited to a top car when he was around Gasly’s age. Yet he is now a good midfield driver who is being cheered for finally ranking up. Why can’t Gasly and Albon rebounce as well?

          1. Which is the top you’re referring to? McLaren had a dog when he joined them for 2013. Checo didn’t have a solid car until this year.

          2. @pironitheprovocateur – Fair enough, I mistook the car when I should’ve said a front-line operation, which McLaren was at the time. I guess my point may lose some poise.

          3. Perez scored two podiums at Sauber. He also did well against Jenson Button at McLaren and he showed Hulk the way at Force India. He is obviously a good driver.

    3. @spafrancorchamps – ok, I gotta admit Perez’ fairytale this season flattered him a bit. However, his record suggests he may be more like Ricciardo, generally slower than Verstappen but seizing opportunities to, who knows, capitalise at the end of the season.

      1. If perez is as good as ricciardo in the red bull, they will be doing cartwheels of joy. I think I agree with what others have said – I expect him to be no closer to max in qualifying but far more solid in the races than gasly or albon. But let’s wait and see, he deserves a fair crack.

    4. I really don’t expect Perez stature to suffer much @spafrancorchamps. Nobody expects him to get in there and beat Verstappen, certainly not all the time as @frood19, @niefer and the others mention.

      The thing Red Bull need most from their second driver is to be there when it counts, to be able to bother the Mercedes in not having free roam to just pit whenever they feel its best for them and to pick up the pieces when needed, like in Bahrains second race.
      I do think Perez has improved his qualifying after losing out to Ocon in that respect, and he doesn’t seem to need the car to be stable in the rear as much as some other drivers.

      I think Perez knows himself, knows his qualities and has had enough experience with a range of different cars that will help him find a good setup. He won’t have it being too much for him to deal with all at once. Perez showed that given a car that can do the job, he gets the podiums in. And even that win. I think that had he been in Strolls position in Italy, we would not have seen Gasly win that easily.

  4. I can’t comment on Perez. I got lost in Bing translation. It’s said that “according to research, all indications are that Sergio Pérez will be introduced”.

    That’s doesn’t sound like a tip from someone with authority but the media own assertion.

    1. Google “Perez Red Bull “, multiple media outlets saying the same thing within just past few hours.

      Example: https://www.autosport.com/f1/news/154273/perez-poised-to-replace-albon-at-red-bull-for-2021

      1. It seems there are 2 sources for all those stories. One in the Netherlands with probably somebody around Max as their source, and another from a German magazine that is part of Red Bull (They have their own TV and print media).

        @ruliemaulana @kichi-leung. The rest of the reporting is just copy cat from those two.

    2. @ruliemaulana When it is reported in The Times (UK) who reported the story and clarified that the source – Speedweek is owned by Red Bull media it is safe to say this is not speculation any longer!

      1. Speedweek is owned by Red Bull media

        @ju88sy that’s makes a good sense. I’m starting to feel bad for Albon.

  5. My opinion is that Perez will probably be almost as “slow” as Albon in terms of qualifying, but will seize more chances at the races, so although not a threat whatsoever for Max, he will score more points and even fighting with (at least 1) Mercedes every so often, offering more chances for Red Bull to use strategy to attempt to win the race.

    1. Hiland (@flyingferrarim)
      18th December 2020, 3:46

      we will see. The RB has shown it’s a tough car to handle for most (minus Max) so we will see how Perez adapts to this car. If he doesn’t adapt to this car, I would not expect long runs from Perez.

  6. This is good news in my opinion. Like I said previously, there is no real downside for Red Bull. If Perez is quicker than Albon and proves to be an able back-up to Verstappen, that’s a huge win. If he proves to still be some way adrift of Verstappen, have Red Bull really lost anything? Would have been no different with Albon, but now they can also get some extra cash from Perez’s backers. If they had chosen Perez over a potential F1 champion like Russell, it would not be a sensible choice. But over Albon? Every day of the week. Albon hasn’t proved he has what it takes to even be in F1. His time at Toro Rosso was never truly that impressive (compared to Kvyat, who was kicked out of F1), and certainly not at Red Bull.

    1. I honestly hope that Perez does not get his career destroyed by going to Red Bull. But it’s better than sitting the year out? Or is it? Just pray that he can drive the car because Red Bull’s cars have been arguably the most or second most difficult car to drive over the last 2 years. I’d prefer Albon to have another year after he stayed with the team for 2 years, but Red Bull have been giving no challenge to Mercedes, so I can understand why, and this is also probably them admitting that their young driver program has not lived up to their expectations in the last years.

      1. @krichelle – I don’t think it’s a case of weak program but of total focus at a strong leader, Verstappen. It’s like Red Bull hasn’t got the time and resources to focus on refining the 2nd driver when they should be refining the whole operation to take on Mercedes. They were more than happy with Ricciardo because he could keep up without disturbance whilst placing himself perfectly on strategy. Perez seems a good prospect on that regard, because the young guns, when faced with make or break, the odds of breaking seems bigger.

      2. I mean, no one else wanted to sign Perez either? His F1 career is either over now, over a year or not at all if he performs well.

        1. Well no one else wanted to sign him cos he had a contract for 2021 that was canceled fairly last minute. By that time most of the lineup was already committed.

      3. Jose Lopes da Silva
        18th December 2020, 11:09

        Perez career is destroyed by Lawrence Stroll.
        Red Bull can save it, not destroy it.

        1. Indeed, I don’t understand people saying perez’s career might be destroyed, even if he had another seat, it’s time for him to try a proper car, you are in f1 to win after all.

  7. I think that RB realize they may have chances to split strategies with their drivers and actually have Perez get in the way of the Mercs from time to time by running long.

    No one is expecting him to trouble Max overall in qualifying or the overall standings but I don’t think the casual fan quite realizes how strong he is at being able to save tyres whilst staying on the pace.

    It will pay dividends immediately and I think it will make next year exciting

  8. We knew he was going to be a candidate the moment RP make him available, he will be asset for any team, hopefully Redbull has a very competitive car next year and Mercedes doesn’t win everything hands down again.

    Perez can qualify as high as the car can, however many times he sets up for race pace in purpose as points are given Sunday. Strategy that may not be a necessary compromise in a top car, anyway I feel he can make better job fighting at the front than Albon

  9. Perez has more experience than Gasly or Albon and that will make him Verstappen’s most formidable teammate.

      1. Maybe even better than Ric. We may never know.

  10. I’m a massive perez fan.

    He might go to redbull and flop against Perez.

    I am incredibly excited to find out. The worst fate would be for him to not even try.

  11. Great for RedBull

    They suddenly become a problem for other teams.

    It’s a good thing to be at RedBull now.

  12. Verstappen will destroy Perez.

    The usual crowd will start saying the car suits Max and not Sergio, RBR favouring Max, not allowed to beat Max lol.

    1. Quite the opposite. I think people will just think higher of Max.

      1. The haters will always find something to discredit Max.
        Up until now, the only driver who could keep up with Max was Ricciardo, who has destroyed Ocon who was pretty even matched with Perez. I know these comparisons aren’t perfect, but I’m not expecting Perez to challenge Max. Being closer than Albon and Gasly will be an achievement in and of itself.

        1. I don’t think being closer than albon or gasly would be an achievement, perez is a decent driver and I’m sure he’ll be closer to verstappen; likewise, being closer to him than ricciardo was WILL be an achievement.

  13. AJ (@asleepatthewheel)
    18th December 2020, 3:52

    Signing Perez will not change the WCC positions whatsoever. The least RBR would expect of Perez is to be within a pit stop of the Mercs to try and disrupt their strategy so that their golden boy can win a few more races for publicity. Or perhaps even overtake one Merc at the start and keep them behind for as long as possible. Albon/Gasly were languishing wayyy at the back, so RBR were fighting with one arm tied. But it wouldn’t change a thing for next year in terms of championships.

    1. in this year’s Championship Red Bull would still come second yes, but you don’t know if that will apply for next year

    2. In any other year, Ferrari would have soundly beaten Red Bull to that number two position with Albon performing the way he did.

      1. True that, good point about ferrari, even in 2019, which was a bad year for ferrari red bull paid the price for having underperforming drivers.

  14. The second RB seat has been a poisoned chalice for a number of years now. Not sure this will improve with Perez no matter how good he is.

    Even other team principals commenting on the same phenomenan of Rb being a 1 driver team and insinuting the reasons why that might be the case.

    If he does get the seat, wish him luck

    1. I can’t remember RBR drivers being forced to gift positions or race wins to Max. I can’t remember RBR drivers being forced to act as rear gunners for Max.

      One team does though. Not so much this year because their car was so dominant that someone could jump into the cockpit set up for someone else and within 48 hours be a race winner.

      Credit to Max though if he has managed to manipulate the team into sabotaging teammates. To go into a team at 18 and dictate terms to an organisation as large and ruthless as Red Bull is quite a feat.

      1. @deanfranklin Red Bull have explicitly stated in the past that they are prepared to use team orders, and they have occasionally issued team orders to demand that drivers ceded their position to Verstappen during races (Gasly did receive such an order during the 2019 British Grand Prix). Mind you, you probably can’t remember such incidents because, judging by your behaviour, you don’t want to remember anything that could imply even the slightest element of bias by the team towards Verstappen.

        1. That’s just logical Verstappen was significantly faster.

          Whereas Singapore last year Bottas was faster than Hamilton but was told to not challenge Hamilton.

          Had a win stolen from him Russia 2018.

          Team wouldn’t let Bottas go on a contra strategy in Portimao, but then put Hamilton on a contra strategy to get him ahead of Bottas at Imola.

          I’ll tell you one thing. If a substitute driver came in for Verstappen and beat Albon, Albon wouldn’t driving a Red Bull the following season contract or no contract.

          1. I agree with most, dean, except for the albon part, I believe red bull has been unusually tolerant towards albon and I think it’s a bad thing.

        2. anon, Mercedes also used team orders (even when Ross was there) but are not as open to admit to it.

          It’s a team sport and team orders are not an issue IMO as long as they are used to maximise the outcome for the team.

  15. Hiland (@flyingferrarim)
    18th December 2020, 4:05

    That’s the wrong way to look at it. I’m sure that there is a female driver out there that can cut it. The issue is the pool of female drivers to male drivers is considerably smaller. It’s statistics. I agree that the creation of the W Series is the wrong way of developing a female driver. I also agree that they need to be going up against the best competition to improve. Put aside their gender/sex and look at them as drivers. They need to get tested and go through those growing pains. If these females don’t do that and one finally breaks into F1 and doesn’t go well (aka not ready). That will only hurt other women F1 prospects in the future. What needs to be done is to get them into these Ferrari or RedBull driver type academies and get them in good machines going against other notable F1 male prospects. They need to prove they are capable to compete! F1 is the best of the best and you put a driver in F1 that isn’t ready… they will look like fools out there.

    1. I’m sure that there is a female driver out there that can cut it.

      Except there’s literally not.
      Or else she’d be on the grid.

      1. I guess the same can be said of non-white racing drivers, aside from Latino/Hispanic people, who’ve ha a decent level of representation. This sport has been dominated by white men for a long time, and while there may be some physical aspects to racing a Formula 1 car that might make a difference between sexes, there shouldn’t be any physical or mental barriers for non-white racing drivers to make it. Arguably the best in the world currently is Lewis Hamilton, an African-origin Brit. Nationality does play a factor, most definitely, since it opens doors to more opportunities, financial and otherwise, but why don’t we have more Asian-Brits or African-French racers in F1 or on the cusp of a seat? Yes, you’ll have scattered examples here and there, but it’s definitely not representative of the ethnic makeup of Europeans.

        The fact that we haven’t had any female driver come within the cusp of being an F1 driver on merit in a while is largely down to the fact that there haven’t really been the level of affirmative action or a support system for women. A separate series is a start, and what would really help if the best female racing drivers from there get the backing and opportunities of testing, sim-racing and working extensively with a large outfit. But opportunities are a big factor.

  16. Don’t shortcut Perez yet. He may be better than we have seen so far. RedBull as an organization should be a better environment for Sergio to grow in. Look he is a winner going to the second Best team of 2020. He knows his role already. He will support Max in a way he hasn’t seen in years. It has the makings of a very wise choice on RedBulls part. I’m seeing the challenge to the Great one, with Sergio in place he can only make Max even better. In race form Sergio makes the presence of RedBull on Sundays now as a double threat. If one doesn’t win the other is well suited to grab 25 points. Next year at this time will show the decision for Perez was well worth it.

  17. Don’t understand why posters are trying to compare Perez and Max. It is clear that Red Bull want a Bottas-type driver who will support Max. So Perez needs to be compared to Albon and Gasly, not Max.

    Perez is better than Albon on basis of current form. I presume no doubts about that.

    Comparing Perez and Gasly is difficult given that there has been no common team-mate they have gone against and their cars have also been quite different in terms of speed. I would guess there isn’t much to choose between the two. But comparing Gasly & Perez’s age, Perez is more likely to accept a no.2 role than Gasly is. Perez will be 31 next year and is unlikely to have any top teams lining up for him in a couple of years. This is his last shot at a front running team and hence he will be more accommodative when it comes to intra-team battles

    Gasly is 24 years old, has a much longer career ahead of him and has a genuine chance of going to the top teams – Merc, Ferrari, Mclaren,Red Bull – in the future. Being no.2 to Max would not be good from that perspective.

    Perez is very much the ‘Bottas’ type driver than Gasly and Albon. Hence, it makes sense to put him instead of the other two.

    1. Let’s stop this narrative he’s going to Red Bull to be a doormat like Bottas.

      Of the three big teams they are the fairest with their drivers.

      If he’s good enough to beat Max, RBR will let him.

      They had no problem with Ricciardo coming in and destroying their golden boy. No problem with Max coming in and destroying Ricciardo.

      Gasly and Albon had their chance but blew it. Might as well roll the dice with Perez.

      Credit to Red Bull they are the only real meritocracy, constantly striving to get the best pairing of drivers.

      1. @deanfranklin

        Of the three big teams they are the fairest with their drivers.

        Correct except for Merc, McLaren, Alpha Tauri, Williams and one or two others.
        I think it was 2018 when they moved the experienced members of Ricciardos crew to Verstappen after they announced that they would build the team around him. Leaving Ricciardo with a less experienced crew, he ended with a bag full of DNFs in the second half of the season allowing Verstappen to out score Ricciardo for the first time.

        1. was that not after Max had all those DNF in 2017?

          1. @macleod Ah yes 2017 three of the DNFs Verstappen crashed out and on another occasion he torpedoed Riiciardo, yes I remember.
            @deanfranklin Speed edge? On some occasions at some circuits that may have been true, Verstappen is fast but he was reckless.

        2. Max had a speed edge on Ricciardo throughout 2017.

  18. It’ll be interesting to see if Perez’s driving style will be compatible with the pointy front end that Max tends to like and has seemed to undo his most recent teammates. Or will Newey start to design a more neutral car that will benefit Perez and his tyre management skills so that Red Bull can have two drivers able to fight for podiums rather than one who fights for wins and one who can’t get on the podium?

    1. The 2022 car should be more neutral if you could say that as groundeffect will be the biggest downforce generator.

  19. Fingers crossed for perez.

  20. Bit of an oversimplication of the photosynthesis process there my friend. The oxygen from CO2 also ends up in the carbohydrates produced. The release oxygen gas actually comes from the hydrolysis of water.

  21. If Albon is left without a seat it will be a strange one. I think Albon would be perfect fit for Haas but it is a bit late now.
    Can anyone remember last time when a driver from a winning team didn’t get a seat for the next season?

    1. Certainly the highest profile one that comes to mind immediately is Hill being ditched by Williams after winning the 1996 world championship… to be fair, it sounds like they’d made the decision before the title had been won but still pretty awful!

      1. But Hill wasnt in the same league as Albon.

      2. Williams throwing out their championship winning driver is their signature move

    2. Albon will be reserve and testdriver for 1 year so he isn’t fired yet.

  22. W Series by itself won’t be enough, there needs to be a proper talent hunt and incentive programmes for women in the karting level (and non-white Europeans too, I say Europe specifically because there is a proven F1 market there, which is probably only rivalled by South America and Japan). That way, they can develop enough talent to showcase their abilities in W Series and other lower-level championships before trying out F3 and F2.

    Too often we’ve seen promising female racer in F4 and other entry-level championships only for them to not be anywhere at that level once they make the step to F3 or F2-level machinery. Drivers like Beitske Visser, Sophia Floersch, Alice Powell, even Jamie Chadwick in FREC this year come to mind. Juju Noda (Danish F4) and Abbi Pulling (British F4) showed strong form in F4 this year and it’ll be interesting to see if they can buck this trend.

    A proper talent hunt, a strong support system and a thriving W Series could help us find out if there are better drivers than the likes of Visser, Floersch, Powell and Chadwick. And if there aren;t and it is established that the physicalities of racing in F3/F2/F1 is something that’s significant enough for there to be a difference in the sexes, then you could develop W Series into a women’s version of F3 or F2, with the most impressive drivers getting the chance to jump to the FIA-accredited series and prove their worth, kind of how a lot of LPGA players have played on the PGA tour from time to time.

    1. I mean that non-white European male racers should get a support at the entry level, but since there shouldn’t be a biological barrier to them performing well enough on a level playing field, the support should just be to get them into a good management programme and a start in car racing. The rest of the points about W Series are of course, just for women, since we don’t know yet as to whether there is a biological barrier.

      1. Sure there is, no woman is dumb enough to ask parents for money, just so she cam drive circles all her youth and teen years. And then ask for even more money.

        Not really biological, but in general less women are interested about racing, and even less crazy enough to raise money needed.

        This is why most drivers who get to F1 these days seem like spoiled brats.

  23. Perez experience is in the setup of the car and is going to show it, you are not going to have a second driver copying what Ver do and wish for the best that is what is always happened with Redbull drivers, they think Ver setup is the best and the copy it, wait for somebody that knows how to setup the car.

  24. We can mostly agree Perez is the best current driver without a seat, that wants to race.

    1. I’d prefer Hülkenberg, but given how tall he is, how well Perez fared against him and the fact that Perez brings money, I can’t fault Red Bull for going with Perez

      1. Yes, I don’t mind hulkenberg and he’s certainly more deserving of a seat than someone like vettel imo, or albon, but perez has been simply better cause when where were chances to shine on midfield teams, he did just that, instead of throwing them all away.

  25. The whole principle behind it is flawed. Women can compete with men, look at Michèle Mouton for example

  26. The point, of course, in signing Perez (if and when it will be formally announced later today) is to try and have to drivers regularly in the top-four so that Red Bull wouldn’t have to rely on a single driver unnecessarily often and be limited in strategic options with one driver against two Mercs. Perez probably getting outscored is less relevant as long as he scores a considerably higher portion of the team’s #1 driver’s points than Albon this year and Gasly.

    COTD: I agree entirely.

    1. Indeed, maybe some people defending albon are overlooking something also: perez outscored albon while in a lesser team!!

  27. Expected (almost) news about Perez. Earlier in the season I favoured Hulkenberg for that seat. But there is no denying that Perez had a very strong finish in 2020, even though his full season was not that stellar. Still not sure if Perez is stronger than the Hulk (the latter win their inner team battle), but Perez is in a roll now and has proven he can finish it when offered the opportunity.

    Good to see that FIA is getting serious about green combustion fuels. In F1 (the pinnacle of technical innovation) is rightly where they should showcase this. Though I still see it as a missed opportunity to go for bio waste fuels rather than synthetic fuels based in solar powered carbon capture.

    Best news of all is that the round-up is a true round-up rather than a list of old quotes and social media garbage. And with the season over we seem to have less trolling commenters with only a few known exceptions remaining (as can be seen above).

  28. I don’t know how they would treat Perez once he signs the drive. Maybe like what they do with their past drivers, but I don’t hope they do that.

    1. Or how Perez treats the team. It seems pretty certain, and he seems confident, that he has a seat in 22 elsewhere. So neither he or the team have anything to lose if its a one year contract as expected. Beating Hamilton maybe stretching it a bit, but with Perez hungry for points and not intimidated by Max a WCC maybe within reach if they can hit the ground running in 21.

      1. I don’t think perez is able to win a title in circumstances different from 2016 rosberg, but indeed, let’s not underestimate it, he never had a chance at a top team, this chance will definitely either prove he’s just a good midfield driver or prove he’s a top driver that flew under the radar.

  29. The F1 cars are not as physical as they once were and if sim boy Lando Norris can drive well in F1 I am sure Jamie Chadwick could do a stellar job.

  30. Cotd is absolute rubbish. I know the Sainz’s. I don’t think their relationship was worth anything on or off track. Carlos does what suits him best what gives him the best press, best headlines and to gain control over his team mate. Had the mclaren duo not worked as a team, carlos was the only one that was going to get grilled by the media and mclaren would have to firce them to work for the next race, that is it. McLaren were a midfield team, midfield teams don’t clash with each other, in fact, RP, Renault and even Ferrari all worked as team during this season, asking their drivers to get out of the way.

  31. Jose Lopes da Silva
    18th December 2020, 13:08

    If this turns reals, were are losing Grosjean, Magnussen, Albon and Kvyat, and we’re getting Alonso, Schumacher and Tsunoda. Not bad. I’d like to get 4 drivers, though.

  32. If Perez ends up at Red Bull it’ll be make or break time. He has done a phenomenal job over the past few years establishing himself as the king of the midfield. He also reached his operatic high notes in his last few races with Racing Point. It’s not often in one’s F1 career, that a driver had the chance to leave F1 on such a high note.

    I’m not sure what anyone has to gain from this. Perez is a fighter but Max is a panther. I can’t see them working together – they were literally running into each other this season and Perez was looking for a drive at the time and knew to avoid the Red Bull. Once he has a contract, Max’s Red Bull will just be a roadblock to Checo.

    Let’s not forget that a single race forced Daniel out of Red Bull. All it takes is one race incident to wreak havoc upon Red Bull and make them long for quiet and peace of the Gasly and Albon days.

    In signing Perez, there’s no doubt that Red Bull no longer views Max as an indispensable asset.

    1. I don’t think the last phrase is true, red bull might reasonably want a decent 2nd driver, which albon and gasly simply aren’t, hell, even kvyat did better in his red bull time.

  33. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
    18th December 2020, 13:51

    So Tsunoda is feeling #22. To my reckoning that makes the third repeat number since the inception of driver numbers:

    #22 Button / Tsunoda
    #99 Sutil / Gioviazzi
    #6 Rosberg / Latifi

    Any other repeats anyone can think of?

    1. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
      18th December 2020, 13:55

      So turns out there are 3 others:

      #10 Kobayashi / Gasly
      #28 Stevens / Hartley
      #88 Haryanto / Kubica

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