Christian Horner on Red Bull's success and hints at next step
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Sergio Perez’s dad has criticised Max Verstappen’s ability after a team orders row exploded at Red Bull. Antonio Perez Garibay claimed Verstappen “feels the breath” of Perez compared to his other Red Bull team-mates.
In a swipe at Verstappen’s skills, the Mexican suggested his son was able to win races Max cannot, including some of the harder ones. Speaking to Mexican newspaper Esto, Perez senior said: “Today Max already feels the breath of ‘Checo’ in his helmet because of what he is demonstrating.
“He had never had a similar partner, the others were much inferior. ‘Checo’ wins the races that Max cannot, the truly difficult ones. I find it incredible that they defend [Sergio], that is the greatest satisfaction.”
He made the comments ahead of Sunday’s season finale just days after Perez was denied P6 in Brazil.
Red Bull had demanded Verstappen let Perez through to help secure points for his battle with Charles Leclerc to finish as runner-up. But, Verstappen ignored the requests and later moaned at race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase when asked to explain his actions.
The reigning champion claimed he had reasons for not letting Perez past with rumours hinting it was after an incident at the Monaco Grand Prix. Perez hit back at Verstappen over team radio, adding: “This shows who he really is.”
However, Verstappen’s mum also weighed into the debate after Sao Paulo and lit more fuel on the debate. In a now-deleted Instagram post, the ex-karting champion seemed to accuse Perez of “cheating” on his wife.
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Red Bull also claimed their drivers had received hate mail since the incident in Interlagos. A team statement read: “The events that followed from a social media point of view are completely unacceptable.
“The abusive online behaviour towards Max, Checo, the team and their respective families is shocking and saddening and unfortunately is something that we as a sport are having to address with depressing regularity. There is no place for it in racing or society as a whole and we need to do and be better.
“At the end of the day this is a sport, we are here to race. Death threats, hate mail, vitriol towards extended family members is deplorable. We value inclusion and want a safe space for everyone to work in and enjoy our sport. The abuse needs to stop.”
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