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Horner on dynamic of Verstappen and Perez: 'They are definitely not mates'

Horner on dynamic of Verstappen and Perez: 'They are definitely not mates'

27 June - 16:47 Last update: 17:17


Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez have a good laugh with each other outside of races, but Christian Horner insists teammates are never real friends. Now that Perez feels more comfortable in the Red Bull car, the Mexican wants to be world champion, just like Verstappen. That creates a different dynamic within the team, Horner says.

In an interview with Cambridge Union Horner is asked how the team deals with two drivers who both want to win. The Red Bull team boss finds it conflicting, as the team itself is only paid for the constructors' championship place. There is no bonus for a driver's place in the drivers' championship.

"The drivers are contractors to the team, they’re there to perform for the team. Teammate is a fallacy, the worst thing that they are. They are definitely not mates, because the guy in the other car is the only person that you’re judged against. He’s the only person with the same equipment, so he will either make or break your career", Horner says.

Horner: "That adds another dynamic"

Horner stresses that Perez was a huge asset to the team in 2021. At the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the Mexican held off Lewis Hamilton for long periods of time, ultimately allowing Verstappen to clinch the world title. "This year is a complete reset. Sergio feels much more at home in the car, so he now believes in himself that he can be world champion, and that adds another dynamic", the team boss continues.

"Our main competitor is Ferrari, but obviously the drivers want to race each other, but it’s like guys, be careful, this isn’t your car, this is the 800 people that design and build it for you. You’re just lucky enough to drive it, so please respect that and look after it." At the Spanish Grand Prix, Red Bull used team orders for the first time this season. Perez was clearly dissatisfied. The Mexican is currently second in the championship and therefore still has a chance of winning the title.

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