Red Bull F1 Team Reportedly Set to Sign Sergio Perez to Pair With Max Verstappen

A Red Bull-owned media outlet in Europe is reporting today that Sergio Perez is heading to Red Bull Racing to take the seat occupied in 2020 by Alex Albon.

Perez, the former Racing Point driver who finished a career-best fourth in the Formula 1 Drivers’ Championship this past season, is set team with Max Verstappen.

Multiple outlets, including Red Bull-owned Speedweek, reported the move.

Perez, who turns 31 on Dec. 26, would be coming to Red Bull riding the momentum of his best season. Despite missing two races after a positive test for COVID-19 earlier in the season, Perez finished fourth in the standings. The 24-year-old Albon was seventh.

Albon, according to the report, will remain with Red Bull as a reserve driver.

According to Speedweek, “Everything indicates that Sergio Pérez will be introduced as the new Red Bull Racing driver on December 18th. But those responsible at Red Bull didn’t make the decision easy for themselves.

“Although 24-year-old Albon lacked the hoped-for consistency in 2020, he did occasionally demonstrate considerable speed. Thus, like all deserving juniors, Red Bull won’t let him down, Albon will remain a member of the team as a substitute driver.

“He will also be tasked with coordination work with the Formula 1 simulator. A later return as a regular driver is not excluded.”

Albon earlier had said that he was not interested in a reserve role. Meanwhile, Perez said that he had a deal lined up for 2022, which may indicate that any contract with Red Bull is for one year.

For Red Bull to sign Perez, it’s clear that Red Bull hopes to make a run at Mercedes for the Constructors’ Championship in the final year of the current regulations before wholesale changes come to the sport in 2022.

A 10-year veteran in F1, Perez won his first race in his 190th career start this season in the Sakhir Grand Prix in Bahrain. Perez is being replaced at Racing Point—a team that will be rebranded at Aston Martin Racing in 2021—by four-time champion and former Ferrari and Red Bull racer Sebastian Vettel.

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