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Will Albon be retained by Red Bull Racing?


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Poll: Will Albon be retained by Red Bull? (435 member(s) have cast votes)

What will be Albons fate?

  1. He will be retained by Red Bull for 2020 and 2021 (78 votes [17.93%])

    Percentage of vote: 17.93%

  2. He will be dropped by Red Bull by the end of 2020 (284 votes [65.29%])

    Percentage of vote: 65.29%

  3. He will get the boot midseason 2020 (73 votes [16.78%])

    Percentage of vote: 16.78%

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#1 Beri

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 17:58

There have been many discussions on Albon by many of us, myself included. So many that I think it's worth having a seperate discussion on this matter.

In essence: Will Albon be sacked/demoted by Red Bull Racing? Yay or nay?

Albon has had one massive rookie season. He had not driven an F1 car just prior to the 2019 start of winter testing. He performed well at Toro Rosso and was the only driver deserving the promotion once Gasly got kicked out. No one expected wonders of Albon, but he managed point finishes during every race (bar one) at Red Bull Racing. A very good achievement.

Skip to 2020, and one would have at least expected Albon edging closer to Verstappen. No one expects him beating Verstappen, but to have Verstappens back is something that one could expect. Yet he is far off from Verstappen and at one too many occasions he is prone at making mistakes. Add the fact that he gets his race engineer changed after just 3 races, something universally considered as a drivers last chance, and my opinion is that Albon is clinging to his last straw to save his seat.

I hope he does save his seat, because I sincerely think he is better than he has shown until now. But the lad needs to improve a lot. His luck might be that Red Bull doesn't have a replacement ready at their disposal, other than drivers that were demoted by Red Bull to Toro Rosso already.

But my opinion, in the end, is that the pressure will mount too big to overcome. He will be kicked out at Red Bull Racing before the end of this season.

What is your opinion?

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#2 Marklar

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:00

At this rate they'll probably draft Gasly back in

#3 PlayboyRacer

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:00

I think Vettel will take his place.

#4 ArrowsLivery

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:06

I think he should be demoted back to AT, but I think Horner will stick to his guns and keep Albon for 2020 and 2021. 



#5 wj_gibson

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:09

Since they don’t have anyone else, and since the catcalls for his departure are being led by Vettel fans who seem oblivious to the fact that the latter has already signed for Aston Martin, I think he’ll stay.



#6 PayasYouRace

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:18

I feel like Red Bull are in an awkward internal position where they'll happily demote a driver from the main team mid-season, but both their junior team drivers have already been demoted in the past in the same way. Would they really bring Kvyat or Gasly back after already being deemed not good enough? Who would they replace Albon with? I think that alone will keep Alex in the seat for the rest of the season.

 

Alpha Tauri is no longer the development team for young talents to prove themselves before promotion to Red Bull Racing, but the remedial team for those who can't perform. I feel Red Bull need to start thinking about getting drivers from outside their programme for the top team, even if it's just short term.



#7 SenorSjon

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:18

He wasn't that impressive last year to be frank and his only 2 shots at a podium came when a late SC and good team strategy put him in prime position for a good finish. Both times it failed. Add to this that he won as much races in his whole single seater career as Verstappen has F1 victories, it is a bit odd he got the TR ride in the first place.

#8 noikeee

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:20

I was going to open a thread about RB and the bizarre situation they're in now regarding drivers.

Albon doesn't seem to be good enough, but re-promoting Gasly or Kvyat don't seem like particularly great ideas neither, albeit Gasly is on good form. Worse, the junior talents in line don't look amazing (keep in mind I haven't seen the F2/F3 races this weekend yet), there's some promise in Vips, Tsunoda, Lawson, but is this really the queue of stars we've seen in RB in the past? I say no. Vips is maaaaaybe good enough, yet they're really messing up with his development by parking him outside of proper development series.

We're witnessing a) an over reliance on Max Verstappen, and b) the consequences of at least 5 years of bad recruitment from RB at junior level. They missed out on Leclerc, Russell, Norris, when in previous generations they used to hog all the talents (remember when they had Vettel, Ricciardo, Vergne, a fresh GP3 champ Kvyat, Sainz, Félix da Costa, and still added Max to that whole roster??). Now it's hard to see what's the plan for the short/mid term future. I imagine they might have to stick with Albon for a little longer and hope he comes good, but wouldn't be surprised if sooner or later they break with recent tradition and hire from outside. If they'd go for a driver now, Hulkenberg and Perez are available. But I see Norris as a more fitting new face, maybe 2 years from now.

#9 Montie

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:20

He is not doing much better than Gasly did at this point. There a few drivers I would pick to that seat over him.

#10 DutchQuicksilver

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:22

At this rate they'll probably draft Gasly back in

 


But is it wise for Gasly to accept? He’s just found his mojo and happiness in racing back at AlphaTauri.

#11 Stephane

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:23

QUestion is who wants to burn his career there to replace him ?



#12 Izzyeviel

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:28

Depends on who else Marko has his eye on and if they can find another seat for Kyvat in another team.



#13 SirPaulGerman

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:29

They should have keep Sainz, that was a big mistake 



#14 ensign14

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:30

The question is why is a joint no. 1 seat at the junior team better than a no. 2 seat at the senior team...there's something seriously wrong at Red Bull if promotion is a de facto demotion and vice versa.



#15 Ramon69

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:31

Vettel will join Aston Martin imo, no way he'll join Red Bull. Also, Red Bull doesn't have many options, apart from Gasly.



#16 AndyPerry

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:31

QUestion is who wants to burn his career there to replace him ?


Hulkenberg would be perfect for that seat.

#17 liamski

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:32

I like Albon, and I think there is a good driver in him, trouble is there isn't a Great Driver in him. I'd love to see Hulk in that second Red Bull. Trouble is that means one driver would have to be dropped. Gasly has shown great form lately, so either Kvyat or Albon would get the chop. Saying that if I could chose, I'd bring Seb Vettel back ASAP

#18 GiorgioF1

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:32

Get rid of him asap. Test Hulk. Test anyone for crying out loud. Give someone else a chance. Can't look at that seat in my fav team being wasted anymore.



#19 smitten

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:33

I don't think he'll last beyond the end of this season.

 

The broader question is why the second seat is such a problem to RB since they put their eggs in the Verstappen basket?  He's a great driver, but do we really believe that he is so consistently and so much better than talents like Gasly and Albon?  I think there is a culture issue at RB that they need to address if they want a supportive second driver.



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#20 liamski

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:35

I like Albon, and I think there is a good driver in him, trouble is there isn't a Great Driver in him. I'd love to see Hulk in that second Red Bull. Trouble is that means one driver would have to be dropped. Gasly has shown great form lately, so either Kvyat or Albon would get the chop. Saying that if I could chose, I'd bring Seb Vettel back ASAP

I  fact, thinking about it, Kvyat was a Ferrari development driver in 2018, so knows the team and their processes, so swap Kvyat and Vettel immediately, put Seb in the Red Bull and Albon back to Toro Rosso to develop. Voila, perfect solution!



#21 AndyPerry

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:36

I like Albon, and I think there is a good driver in him, trouble is there isn't a Great Driver in him. I'd love to see Hulk in that second Red Bull. Trouble is that means one driver would have to be dropped. Gasly has shown great form lately, so either Kvyat or Albon would get the chop. Saying that if I could chose, I'd bring Seb Vettel back ASAP


I think Kvyat's done with F1 after this season. Won't be by his own choice.

#22 Jovanotti

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:37

Something is seriously wrong with how second drivers are treated at RB. Surely it's evident that Gasly and Albon are better than what they could/can achieve at the main team.

Edited by Jovanotti, 02 August 2020 - 18:37.


#23 Knowlesy

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:39

They should give him time. Maybe (novel thought alert) try and make a car that is capable of being driven by more than one man. All a bit Benetton at the minute.

#24 Hakki069

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:39

With Vettel on his way to Aston Martin. Unless redbull are willing to hire a Perez or Hulkenberg then I can't see past Albon.

Unless Marko shocks us all and gives Danii kvyat another go.

#25 masa90

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:41

He is done. Sad to say, but not good enough. I think he wasn't even the right call last year.

#26 messy

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:41

I don’t think at this rate he’ll last the season. I think they’ll give Gasly another shot because at the moment Albon is no quicker than he was when they booted him - and arguably is making more mistakes. Gasly has been excellent ever since his demotion and is an obvious replacement in many ways. But....would Red Bull essentially admit their mistake by re-swapping them?

#27 AndyPerry

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:42

Something is seriously wrong with how second drivers are treated at RB. Surely it's evident that Gasly and Albon are better than what they could/can achieve at the main team.

Something's wrong with what's being done with their YOUNG drivers/drivers without much F1 experience. Verstappen doesn't count, he's an alien.

Marko is a tyrannical bufoon, who doesn't belong in a modern sporting environment and hasn't developed a single young driver successfully by himself. Vettel and Vestappen fell into his lap. Sainz ran away before it was too late.

What Red Bull needs with Verstappen in the team is a mature, experienced driver, who'll handle the pressure and not let Marko get to him, while still being quick.

Hulkenberg.

Edited by AndyPerry, 02 August 2020 - 18:43.


#28 Disgrace

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:43

Out of four drivers, Red Bull have one superstar and four busted flushes. Time to start questioning the Red Bull management.



#29 ensign14

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:44

Something is seriously wrong with how second drivers are treated at RB. Surely it's evident that Gasly and Albon are better than what they could/can achieve at the main team.

They are their own proof.  Albon at TR beating Gasly at RB, and Gasly at AT beating Albon at RB.



#30 Timantti

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:45

Albon is done. The only impressive thing he has done so far was match Verstappen in Suzuka qualifying. After that he hasn't been within 3 tenths of Max in qualifying and the gap is even bigger over a race distance. The biggest thing he seems to have over Gasly is that at least he sucks in a consistent fashion unlike Gasly who had even greater lows. I personally think that in outright pace Gasly is faster than Albon though. 

 

During his career so far Albon hasn't shown a single sign of actually having great potential. Correct me if I'm wrong but I doubt there are any race weekends where he was just on fire and blisteringly fast. Can anyone post a single hot lap of him which oozes quality?


Edited by Timantti, 02 August 2020 - 18:46.


#31 Tiakumosan

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:48

The problem I see is that, while he's not at Max's level, he has never been close to him. If he was fast but inconsistent, on a good day he should be really close, maybe beat, Max. But no, he's always 0.5 sec behind, if not more, and the gap doesn't seem to be shrinking.

Maybe they will sort the car out first, but it doesn't look he has it for now.

#32 balaclava

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:49

Looks like Redbull Racing is the Honda HRT of F1... A fast car that only a special talent can drive competitively.

Albon is failing under the weight of having a monster as a teammate, and racing for the most notorious meat grinder of the racing world.

#33 messy

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:59

Albon is done. The only impressive thing he has done so far was match Verstappen in Suzuka qualifying. After that he hasn't been within 3 tenths of Max in qualifying and the gap is even bigger over a race distance. The biggest thing he seems to have over Gasly is that at least he sucks in a consistent fashion unlike Gasly who had even greater lows. I personally think that in outright pace Gasly is faster than Albon though. 
 
During his career so far Albon hasn't shown a single sign of actually having great potential. Correct me if I'm wrong but I doubt there are any race weekends where he was just on fire and blisteringly fast. Can anyone post a single hot lap of him which oozes quality?


A lot of his 2018 F2 season was very, very encouraging. He was definitely quicker on a regular basis than Lando Norris, who now looks like an absolute speed demon in the McLaren. He was part of a clear ‘big three’ alongside Norris and Russell - not bad company to be in. It’s also telling that all his peers seem to absolutely rave about his ability and speed.

But somethings wrong in the Red Bull. Just like it was for Gasly, Kvyat, even Ricciardo in his later years there. It’s as if only Max can squeeze anything out of it. Is it actually a really difficult car, or do they just develop the car around Max? Or do they just break the confidence of their new/non-Max drivers with their approach? They certainly didn’t seem to be great with Gasly.

#34 Fastcake

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:00

Red Bull have found themselves in an almighty hole. Albon would probably be replaced by previous Red Bull standards, but they only have two drivers they've already dumped driving for Alfa Tauri, and no one ready elsewhere. You've got to look at the way they have managed themselves now. They're driving people away, and then hanging on to discarded drivers for no clear purpose. Are they really going to give another chance to Kvyat or Gasly? They may have to if they suddenly need a replacement, but what if they lose Verstappen? They don't have a championship potential partnership without him any more. Any hope of a better driver now has to come from outside their programme.

 

I wonder if Albon's increasingly poor performances is partially the result of a toxic team environment? Perhaps enough pressure and a lack of support to the extent he's falling apart. He certainly sounded terrible over the radio in Hungary, like he was struggling to keep himself together.



#35 TomNokoe

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:01

I want to give him time, but Albon has very quickly become out of his depth.

It's already known that being slower than Verstappen is accepted. I sometimes think this is a luxury that wasn't fully afforded to Gasly, albeit Gasly arrived with higher expectations. Red Bull learnt after his demotion that you have to treat these newbies gently, and they've been very accomodating and patient with Albon.

However, Albon is quickly pushing the limits as to what Red Bull should tolerate.

Including 2019, he's making a habit of crashing in practice. Usually small fry for top teams like Red Bull, but in a topsy-turvy development race, trying to understand a tricky 2020 machine, they cannot afford to waste their time, energy and money rebuilding smashed chassis.

As an extension to the above, he also has a propensity to make contact with others. On some occasions his race is unaffected (Norris/Suzuka - Perez/Austria - Grosjean/Hungary) but in others he totally ruins his weekend (Hamilton/Austria -Magnussen/Today). I don't think it's just an unlucky run that he's always making contact. And, usually, he is fighting cars much slower than him, so the level of risk he takes is totally unacceptable and lacking racing sense.

It was clear that Red Bull dropped Gasly because he was poor in traffic, but Albon is carrying that baton far too enthusiastically. As per today, it cost him points, and no doubt will probably lead to a race-ending crash and more damage if he keeps it up.

Also, I know I said being slower than Verstappen was acceptable, but dropping out in Q2 and totally compromising your weekend is not. This is another worrying trend.

You can make valid arguments that had he been closer to Verstappen this season:

1. He could've interfered with Bottas in Austria 2, potentially helping Max secure P2.

2. He could've inherited victory today, or taken the pit-stop for fastest lap himself, leaving Max to inherit victory instead.

The constructors' championship isn't that precarious, and RB are sure to sort out their issues, but it's again very fair to argue that had McLaren and Racing Point executed their weekends better, Red Bull could be sitting P3/P4 in the WCC.

In a weird sort of way, Verstappen's brilliance might actually be saving Albon, because Mercedes are too far ahead anyway in reality, and the midfield isn't enough of a threat.

I've always liked Gasly. I thought his demotion was harsh. His comeback has been admirable and he's potentially driving at a higher level now than at the end of 2018, when he was promoted. I don't agree with those who throw him in the same bracket as Kvyat, Albon and other RB rejects. Gasly is a step above, IMO. However, I don't think he should go back to RB, it just wouldn't work. I doubt he would have enough confidence both within himself, and the team, to perform at a high level.

Finally, coming back to Albon, I'm convinced he has the speed, but he's now under massive pressure. All he has to do is string a weekend together. But every time he seems to be making progress, something goes wrong.

I hate to say it, but can he afford another weekend like this? Red Bull have to draw the line somewhere.

#36 Ramon69

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:02

Maybe this car just doesn't suit him? Or maybe he simply is mediocre. I don't remember anything mindblowing from him last year either, although he had some strong performances here and there... 

 

It's a shame that next year the cars will be mostly the same, so I doubt much will change even if Red Bull keep him and he is really good.


Edited by Ramon69, 02 August 2020 - 19:03.


#37 DutchQuicksilver

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:14

With Vettel on his way to Aston Martin. Unless redbull are willing to hire a Perez or Hulkenberg then I can't see past Albon.

Unless Marko shocks us all and gives Danii kvyat another go.

 


Well, while Kvyat is clearly off Gasly’s pace, outside his torpedo actions at the start of the 2016 season, he didn’t do too bad during his Red Bull spell. So, I wouldn’t put anything past Marko to promote Kvyat again.

#38 AvranaKern

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:16

They're not able to create different strategy options to bother the Mercedes while Albon fights at the back. Max needs a wing man to rely on, or he's stuck in the lion's den with a lion and a panther. That's not sustainable. Either Albon raises his game, or gets replaced. I favor the latter. The replacement driver could be Vettel.

#39 Timantti

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:19

A lot of his 2018 F2 season was very, very encouraging. He was definitely quicker on a regular basis than Lando Norris, who now looks like an absolute speed demon in the McLaren. He was part of a clear ‘big three’ alongside Norris and Russell - not bad company to be in. It’s also telling that all his peers seem to absolutely rave about his ability and speed.

 

I don't follow feeder series, but isn't there an unwritten rule that the great drivers are expected to do well on their first season? Went and checked and apparently Lando was on his first season and Albon on his second (being 10th in overall standings the first time around). I remember Maldonado being hailed as a pay driver despite winning the GP2 series just because it happened on his fourth try.

 

Also Lando's pre-F1 record seems quite a lot stronger. First places in four different championships and then 2nd in F2 on his first try. Meanwhile Albon had 3rd place in Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 (3rd year), 2nd place in GP3 and then 3rd place in Formula 2 (2nd year). To me Albon's pre F1 record actually seems quite underwhelming for a driver who gets into F1 without any financial backing or am I wrong?


Edited by Timantti, 02 August 2020 - 19:19.


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#40 Knowlesy

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:19

I agree with many aspects of that Tom but the trouble is I just don't see who is out there to replace him.

Gasly maybe, at a push. But hard to see that going any better than last time.

It feels to me like Red Bull don't give their drivers a break if they are going through a rough patch, with the exception of the chosen talents like Vettel and Max.

Everyone else gets thrown under the bus. Men like Webber and Ricciardo can handle this to a degree but the likes of Gasly and Albon are still just boys really.

I dunno. The culture just seems off. A couple of tricky weekends and you have Horner sneering about you.

#41 Baddoer

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:21

I think Albon took a hit in Austria and still yet to reclaim his mojo back.

Doubt he is getting enough support form the team in that.



#42 Dutchrudder

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:23

RedBull actually don’t need to make the change. They aren’t going to challenge Merc in the WCC, and nobody is going to challenge them for 2nd.

If Max gets a podium and Albon averages some points, then they will finish comfortably 2nd. That likely will be the same next year also.

#43 KLF1F

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:25

At some point they just have to acknowledge that Verstappen is a monster driver who will make any team mate look bad, and proceed from there.

Almost reminds me of Schumi in the Benetton.

#44 Bleu

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:28

Red Bull's biggest problem right now is that they don't seem to look at drivers who have made their career without their backing. Ferrari has junior program but they chose Sainz over own junior Giovinazzi. And considering the performance we've seen from those two it was logical decision.



#45 Neno

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:31

Red Bull should entertain possibly getting Perez, Vettel or Hulk for other seat next year. They should be looking into that. 



#46 Retrofly

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:33

At some point they just have to acknowledge that Verstappen is a monster driver who will make any team mate look bad, and proceed from there.

Almost reminds me of Schumi in the Benetton.

Reminds me of Marquez and how he was the only one who could ride the Honda and his teammates always looked mediocre.



#47 William Hunt

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:35

He is not doing much better than Gasly did at this point. 

 

Gasly (and Kvyat as well) would be wise to inform if Alfa Romeo or Haas would be interested in him. As soon as Red Bull has 2 drivers with a Super Licence that they want to promote (e.g. Tsunoda or Lawson) he and Kvyat are out of a job at Alpha Tauri. There is a tiny chance that they give Gasly another shot at Red Bull but I seriously doubt it. Alpha Tauri is a story that could continue for Gasly in 2021, maybe even in 2022 (less likely already) but after that no way so he would be wist to look for a way out before Red Bull starts to bring new recruits in. If Alfa Romeo & Haas say 'no chance' the only thing he can hope for is another 1 year extension at Alpha Tauri (and for 2021 it's highly likely he will get that, Kvyat is more vulnerable). 
We've seen what happened with someone like Vergne: he had no back up plan, neither did Alguersuari so if Gasly finds an opportunity to move to another team he should go for it (that's if his contract allows it, we know that Red Bull sometimes has very long term contract options on their young drivers, Sainz had to fight hard to move to Renault at the time). 


Edited by William Hunt, 02 August 2020 - 19:38.


#48 Risil

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:36

I think they'll bring Gasly back sometime. Red Bull only demoted him, which means they have envisioned this.

#49 Risil

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:39

At some point they just have to acknowledge that Verstappen is a monster driver who will make any team mate look bad, and proceed from there.

Almost reminds me of Schumi in the Benetton.


Ricciardo had a pretty good go. I'm not sure Schumacher ever had that stern a test from a teammate.

#50 cpbell

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 19:40

With Vettel on his way to Aston Martin. Unless redbull are willing to hire a Perez or Hulkenberg then I can't see past Albon.

Unless Marko shocks us all and gives Danii kvyat another go.

I have strange feeling that's the approach they're going to try. :stoned: :smoking: