Sergio Perez ‘laughing’ at retirement rumours and vows to continue F1 career

Thomas Maher
Sergio Perez, Red Bull F1 driver, appears for media day at the Circuit of the Americas for the US Grand Prix.

Sergio Perez is heading into the last year of his current Red Bull deal.

Red Bull’s Sergio Perez has dismissed the recent rumours about his impending retirement, and says his F1 career is nowhere near finished.

With Perez struggling for form and consistency throughout 2023, after having a great start to the season, rumours recently emerged online that Perez was lining up a retirement announcement for the upcoming Mexico City Grand Prix.

With one year left to run on his Red Bull contract, the idea didn’t seem all that unthinkable – given the large stable of drivers Red Bull currently have access to, as well as the disappointing season Perez has had alongside Max Verstappen.

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Speaking to the media ahead of this weekend’s United States Grand Prix, Perez faced inevitable questioning about his future and the rumours which emerged following the Qatar Grand Prix.

“I’m just laughing at it,” he said.

“There’s nothing I can do, I am fully focused on my job. I was really busy with the team as well.

“That really sums up my season, a guy says something about me and then all of a sudden it comes true?

“No, I have a contract for next year, and no reason not to respect that contract, I’m going to give my very best to it. I’ve made a commitment but, more than that, it will not be my final contract in F1.”

But while Perez was defiant about his future being assured, he admitted that his performances recently haven’t been up to scratch. Coming under increasing pressure for second place in the Drivers’ Championship, a goal his bosses dearly want to wrap up to secure a 1-2 finish for the first time in the team’s history, he said that his most recent races have been substandard.

“Definitely, I think the last two races particularly, we were just lost,” he said.

“[But] we are back at it. I have very good days with my engineers, I have the full support of the team. I think it’s time to really pull it back.” recommends

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Having been called out by Red Bull boss Christian Horner to find more performance for the rest of the season, he said that he felt he had reached a much better understanding of what went wrong in Japan and Qatar.

“Basically, it was just important for us to understand where it went wrong,” he said.

“Once we go into these fast weekends with the Sprint event, for example, in Qatar, if you don’t have a good setup, straight away you can easily get lost. It’s what happened to us, I think we just got pretty lost in Qatar.

“But this is how the sport is, you have a good weekend, a bad weekend, we haven’t been able to really get that consistency throughout the year. But there are still five races where things can change for us.”

Sergio Perez: Walking away is not who I am

But as for whether retirement is looking in any way appealing, in light of a dream season turning into a nightmare while his teammate has swept all before him, Perez flatly said his only goal is to get back up on the horse and dig deep.

“It is difficult of course, it’s not ideal when you go through a difficult period in your career,” he said.

“But I just love the challenge of getting back at it – I think the easiest thing would be to walk out of it. But that’s not me, that’s not who I am.

“I will not give up, I have zero doubts that I will be back to my best level and that is the only target I have in mind. I’m not even thinking about retirement or anything, because that’s just the easy route.”

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