There is a positive aura surrounding Red Bull right now. First, they gave their rivals Mercedes a taste of its own medicine with a dominant win at Abu Dhabi GP. And now they will have Sergio Perez to drive alongside Max Verstappen next season.
But why did they hire Perez over other candidates?
Perez will help target Mercedes’ backbone
Long-time Red Bull Advisor Helmut Marko revealed the intricate reasons behind the decision. The Mexican Perez has been driving the whole of the turbo-hybrid era with the class-leading engines of Mercedes behind his car. According to Marko, he carries vital information on their power units.
“Sergio brings a lot of knowledge about Mercedes. After he was thrown at Racing Point, he was obviously very attentive to everything Mercedes did. We hope to receive many contributions from him,” said Marko.
Marko hails tire-management expert Sergio Perez
Although he is not the best over one lap, he comes onto his own on Sunday during the race. “Pérez manages tires in an incredible way. His ten years of experience are an advantage. It has been seen how long he can drive at high speed with a tire,” Marko said further.
With his incredible race pace, the ‘energy drinks’ team hopes it can emulate the glory days of the early 2010s. Back then, Vettel was their lead driver, as Max Verstappen is now. However, he had a competitive teammate in Mark Webber.
Marko sees that quality more in Perez as compared to Alex Albon.
“Our goal is to win the World Championship, as in previous years. To do this, you need two cars that can compete at the front, it’s about strategy. Pérez is fitter than ever. With Alex Albon, however, there were ups and downs, so we had to make a decision,” Marko explained.
“If we also want to aim for the Constructors’ Championship, we need a strong man in the second car,” concluded Marko on the subject. (all quotes are translated through Google Translate).
No one can blame the Austrian outfit for going outside their own talent pool. Gasly and Albon couldn’t keep up with the ‘Flying Dutchman’.
Only time will tell if they found their own ‘Mark Webber’ in Perez. If not, then another one will bite the dust at Red Bull.