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Red Bull's Perez decision imminent, says Marko

Red Bull's Perez decision imminent, says Marko
© Reuters
A decision about Sergio Perez's tenure at Red Bull will be made "soon," according to the team's F1 advisor Dr Helmut Marko. This announcement comes amidst rumours that the decision will occur before the Spanish GP next month.

A decision about Sergio Perez's tenure at Red Bull will be made "soon," according to the team's F1 advisor Dr Helmut Marko. This announcement comes amidst rumours that the decision will occur before the Spanish GP next month.

During the Formula 1 event in Monaco last week, speculation arose that Perez, 34, had performed well enough this season to earn at least a one-year contract extension. However, Perez had a disastrous weekend in Monaco, qualifying poorly at P16 and crashing on lap 1, which Marko estimated caused up to 3 million euros in damage.

Marko, 81, believes that Kevin Magnussen should have been penalised for the incident, though not everyone agrees.

"If you want to blame someone, I lean more towards Perez than Magnussen," said Chinese-Dutch racing driver Ho-Pin Tung in a conversation with nu.nl.

"Of course Magnussen was optimistic, but the stewards also look at how much space a driver is left. Perez wanted to stay on the ideal line, but there was still a lot of space on the left.

On the onboard, you can also clearly see Perez looking in his right mirror. He might not have known that Magnussen was there, but perhaps he should have. Perez didn't have to cut him off like that," Tung added.

Tung also pointed out that Perez's poor qualifying performance contributed to the crash.

"When you're so far back, the risk of being caught up in something like that is high. He really has to improve on that," Tung said.

Marko acknowledges that Perez needs to consistently be closer to Verstappen's performance in the other car.

"It is very difficult, if not impossible, for Sergio to perform at Max's level," he said. "But he does have to be closer.

We need to analyse how things went so wrong," Marko told Sky Deutschland.

Team boss Christian Horner concurs, noting that with Ferrari just 24 points behind Red Bull in the constructors' standings, "it is extremely important for us that both cars earn points."

Marko told Osterreich newspaper that a decision regarding Perez will be taken "soon," considering how Ferrari and McLaren have significantly closed the gap.

"We are now in the third year of the current regulations, and the others are copying us - some are copying better, and you see the result now at McLaren," he said.

"But Ferrari has also constantly developed."

Marko concedes, however, that Perez was not entirely at fault for his poor performance in Monaco.

"Our two drivers came to Monte Carlo enthusiastically, saying the car handled the kerbs really well in the simulator," he said.

"But as soon as they were in the car, they said 'undriveable!'."

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