No rush to confirm Red Bull's 2025 driver line-up – Horner

SHANGHAI, China — Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said his team was in no rush to confirm its driver line-up for 2025, despite Sergio Perez hinting at an imminent contract renewal on Thursday.

Red Bull have signed reigning champion Max Verstappen until 2028 — the 26-year-old said last month he wanted to play down speculation about his future, while team-mate Perez is out of contract at the end of the season.

Speaking to the media ahead of this weekend's Chinese Grand Prix, Perez, who finished second to Verstappen in three of the first four races, said he expected to be at Red Bull for a fifth season.

„The priority is to be here for the future,” Perez said. „I think it's just a matter of time.”

However, when Horner was asked how close his team was to confirming its line-up for 2025, he said: „Not very, I'm afraid. It's unbelievable that we're in the fifth race and there's already a lot of talk about drivers next year.

„We're in a very happy situation with our two drivers and we don't need to make a final decision on our line-up until later this year.

“Obviously, Max is on a long-term contract and Sego [Perez] No contract at the end of the year, but playing well so far this season.”

Asked about Perez's comments, Horner added: „Of course, he wants to make an announcement tomorrow without a doubt.

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„As a team we are not in a particular rush, we are in a fortunate position where many drivers obviously want to drive for the team, but we are happy with the couple we have and we want to ensure that the consistency Checo started the season with is maintained.

„We will evaluate those options in due course, but we are very happy with the line-up we have at the moment, so there is no immediate rush to announce the full driver line-up for 2025.”

Horner's comments follow speculation linking Carlos Sainz with Red Bull for 2025. The Ferrari driver is out of contract at the end of the year and will be replaced by Lewis Hamilton next season, and the 29-year-old is a key player in the driver market.

This week, Red Bull motorsport adviser Helmut Marko said his team was in talks with Sainz, but could not match the money offered to the Spaniard by Audi, which is investing in the Sauber team ahead of its 2026 entry into F1. However, on Friday, Horner denied that Red Bull had any knowledge of Audi's offer to Sains.

„This is pure speculation and we don't know what Audi offered Carlos,” he said. “He's a key driver on the open market so it's only natural that there's going to be significant interest, and I believe it would be foolish not to consider a driver of his caliber among others with seats.

„It would be inappropriate to disclose what offers have been made, and we have not been told what offers have been made from other teams.”

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