Ted Kravitz adds fuel to fire as Sergio Perez paddock rumours continue

Michelle Foster
Red Bull's Sergio Perez pulls a disapproving face.

Red Bull driver Sergio Perez pulls a disapproving face.

Red Bull may not have set out an ultimatum for Sergio Perez but Ted Kravitz understands that if he doesn’t finish P2 in the standings, they will be having a “proper conversation” about his future.

In a season marred by qualifying misery that’s led to a near-constant barrage of rumours that his days on the grid are numbered, Perez is holding onto second place in the Drivers’ Championship by 39 points ahead of Lewis Hamilton.

Although the under-fire Mexican driver found his lead slashed by a further eight points at the United States Grand Prix as he crossed the line P5 to Hamilton’s P2, the Mercedes driver’s subsequent disqualification gave him some much-needed breathing room.

Red Bull want P2 from Sergio Perez

But with four races remaining and Hamilton crossing the line ahead of Perez in the last four races, the Red Bull driver is under immense pressure to give Red Bull the much-wanted 1-2 result in the standings.

And it could determine his future.

Although Helmut Marko recently insisted “there is no ultimatum for Perez“, that doesn’t mean there won’t be serious talks about his future should he fail to finish runner-up to Max Verstappen.

Kravitz called it a “proper conversation” that will need to be had.

“Now there is a rumour around the place that has it that if Checo does not manage to seal P2 in the Drivers’ Championship, which is something that Red Bull Racing have never done and something that Christian Horner and Helmut Marko value very highly this year, then they will have to have a serious think as to whether Checo indeed does stay within his contract for next year, or whether they have a proper conversation with Checo about whether he is actually going to be able to improve for next year,” said the Sky Sports’ pit lane reporter.

“I’m not saying it’s an ultimatum, not saying Checo Perez has got a few races until the end of the season to wrap up the P2 and secure his drive for next year.

“What I am saying is that Checo is under no illusions as to the importance of P2 in the Drivers’ Championship.

“And if he can just keep getting the results in and pleasing his fans that will please Red Bull as well. So that’s the important thing.”

However, his P5 on the line in Austin, beaten by the slower Ferrari of Carlos Sainz, could only be called “solid” by Kravitz.

“P5 today is solid, but it’s not P4 obviously for Carlos Sainz in demonstrably a slower car in the Ferrari than Max Verstappen’s Red Bull,” he added.

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The pit lane reporter also weighed in on the boos Verstappen received when he was on the podium, citing the huge Mexican fanbase at the Circuit of The Americas as “maybe” the voices behind it.

Opening his Notebook by saying he wants to call the United States GP the “Mexican Grand Prix because we pretty much got the whole of Mexican support in Formula One outside the Red Bull garage”, he added that it “feels like Checo has got whole fan club here.

“Maybe explains the boos for Max Verstappen on the podium. Maybe not. I don’t know.”

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