Red Bull increases pressure on Sergio Perez as Max Verstappen makes demands – F1 news summary

After another ‘shock’ for Sergio Perez, Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko warned of the three drivers waiting in the wings, while Max Verstappen took aim at the conditions and imposed three stops in Qatar.

All this and more, so let’s get straight to the action…

Helmut Marko increases the pressure on Sergio Perez

For the second consecutive race weekend, Pérez endured what Red Bull team boss Christian Horner described as a “shock”.

Pérez is under contract until the end of F1 2024, but while Marko says Red Bull wants to honor that, Daniel Ricciardo, Yuki Tsunoda and Liam Lawson are up for grabs if Pérez’s place becomes untenable.

“In general, we want to implement a contract situation that lasts until 2024. And now it depends entirely on him,” Marko told ORF. “But we have three relatively good drivers in AlphaTauri.”

Max Verstappen makes two new demands in F1

While Pirelli tires caused major concern in Qatar, drivers themselves felt the heat on Sunday, leading some to visit medical centers due to the sultry conditions.

Verstappen later believed it was “stupid” to race in this heat and wanted Formula 1 to reconsider the Qatar Grand Prix’s schedule, which would have happened as it was pushed back two months from the year 2024, while feeling three mandatory stops. , due to the microscopic tears present in the compound, cannot exist either.

“When it was 40 degrees during the day, I thought it was stupid to attack like that, especially having to stop three times,” he told Sky Sports.

“It’s almost like I’m always qualified, like I’m doing my best. And maybe it’s a little extreme there.

FIA announce steps to stop repeat

The events of Sunday in Qatar have not been lost on the FIA, who announced that steps will be taken to ensure no repeat of these extreme racing conditions.

The FIA confirmed an upcoming
meeting in Paris to discuss the potential actions, which could include “guidance for competitors, research into modifications for more efficient airflow in the cockpit, and recommendations for changes to the calendar to align with acceptable climatic conditions”.

Audi respond to F1 withdrawal rumours

Looking more long-term in Formula 1, specifically F1 2026, talk had begun to bubble up that a new player from that season could be reconsidering their entry.

The team in question is Audi, who are set to partner with Sauber to create an Audi works team, running their newly-developed F1 power unit, and the German brand insist this will still be the case.

“The schedule of Audi Formula Racing GmbH for the build-up of the organisation and the development of the 2026 F1 Power Unit at the site in Neuburg/Germany remains unchanged,” an Audi spokesperson told PlanetF1.com.

FIA intervention needed to make Max Verstappen F1 great?

Red Bull boss Horner has declared that three-time World Champion Verstappen must now be considered an all-time F1 great, a claim which few disagree with.

However, 2015 Le Mans class winner Richard Bradley believes that only when the Red Bull dominance ends, will we find out how good Max Verstappen actually is.

“Red Bull won’t always have the best car, and then we’re going to really see how good Max Verstappen is,” said Bradley on the On Track GP podcast.

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