F1 rumour mill revs up with Red Bull and Aston Martin developments

Michelle Foster
Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin and Sergio Perez, Red Bull

Aston Martin and Red Bull.

The ink will be dry on Sergio Perez’s newest Red Bull extension before F1 heads to Canada, while rather than being the new team boss, Aston Martin are lining up Mattia Binotto for the role of Chief Technical Officer.

That’s according to Formula 1’s silly season rumour mill.

What’s behind the latest Red Bull reports?

This season Perez has remained a Red Bull driver having held onto his race seat by the skin of his teeth – and his P2 in the 2023 Drivers’ Championship.

Although in 2022 he signed a two-year extension with Red Bull, his struggles last season led to speculation Red Bull may not honour year two, 2024.

He won two of last year’s first four races but then faded into qualifying oblivion as he missed out on Q1 one Saturday after another.

But while he pulled that back to some degree, he managed all of five podiums after the start of his qualy woes in Monaco, none of which were race wins. Verstappen won 16 Grands Prix in that time.

But given Red Bull’s only request of Perez is to finish P2 to Verstappen, he met the brief as he was 50 points up on Lewis Hamilton in the fight to finish runner-up to the rampant Dutchman.

This season he started strong, runner-up to Verstappen in three of the first four races but he wasn’t able to capitalise on Verstappen’s DNF in Australia, P5 on the day, and in the last three races hasn’t been able to support his team-mate.

P4, P8, DNF, the latter the result of a woeful qualifying session that meant he fell victim to a backmarker melee, Perez has dropped to fifth in the Drivers’ Championship.

In a season in which Ferrari and McLaren are coming for Red Bull, and coming hard with their upgraded cars, Perez is 31 points behind P2’s Charles Leclerc and five adrift of P3’s Lando Norris.

It had Christian Horner telling the media including PlanetF1.com that Red Bull need Perez to score points.

“Obviously we need to make sure that we have got both cars up there scoring points, because we cannot dismiss the threat of Ferrari and McLaren in both championships,” he said.

But, and it’s always the ‘but’ that makes the difference, he added: “Checo’s first six races, he was very strong, qualifying on the front row and finishing second and third and scoring very well. We just need to get back into that position of confidence and not to see a dip.”

But whether signs of a dip, as there are, play a role in Helmut Marko’s claim that Red Bull want their line-up decided before the summer break, Horner said: “Not really. I think that it’s more our timing. [We] will make a decision in the fullness of time.”

That doesn’t exactly scream pre-Canada does it? But with no real momentum behind a Red Bull return for Carlos Sainz, it would make sense for Perez to stay on for at least another season.

Key information on Formula 1’s 2025 driver line-up

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Mattia Binotto to Aston Martin rumours continue

The drivers, though, aren’t the only ones making headlines in F1’s silly season.

Earlier this month Italian publication La Gazzetta dello Sport reported that former Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto was back in the paddock at Imola where he headed for Aston Martin hospitality for a conversation with their ambitious owner Lawrence Stroll.

But while they claimed it was “concrete interest” in making Binotto their team principal, f1-news.eu says the position being offered to the Italian is in fact that of Chief Technical Officer (CTO).

“Binotto,” claims the publication, “could take on the role of Chief Technical Officer (CTO), a position that has been vacant since Andrew Green left in early 2023.

“In this new role, Binotto would be the superior of Dan Fallows, Aston Martin’s technical director. Although Fallows continues to design the car, Binotto could focus on establishing the technical structures and collaborate with Martin Whitmarsh, CEO of Aston Martin Performance Technologies, on the overall strategic vision.

“Fallows and team principal Mike Krack would continue to manage all day-to-day processes of the team.”

Taking on a CTO role is more Binotto’s strength than team boss given he began his F1 career as an engineer before taking on the Ferrari team boss role.

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