Sergio Perez to leave Racing Point after 2020 F1 season


Sergio Perez will leave Racing Point at the end of the 2020 F1 season, opening the door for the arrival of Sebastian Vettel

Sergio Perez, 2020 Italian GP

Sergio Perez will leave Racing Point after the end of the 2020 season

Clive Mason - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images

Racing Point has announced that Sergio Perez will leave the team at the end of the 2020 Formula 1 season, leaving the door open for Sebastian Vettel to join the team next year.

The confirmation of Perez’s departure from the Silverstone-based team follows lengthy speculation over the Mexican’s future and rumours that Vettel has been in discussions with the team over a deal for next season.

Perez has been with the team based out of Silverstone for the past seven seasons, from back when it was known as Force India but will not be a part of it when it undergoes another change to become Aston Martin Racing next year.

Since 2014, Perez has claimed five podium finishes and achieved a season-best finish of seventh in the drivers’ championship in the 2016 and ’17 seasons, both years in which the team finished best of the rest in fourth place in the constructors’ standings.

“Checo has been part of the Silverstone family for seven years and in that time has become one of the most complete drivers on the grid,” team principal Otmar Szafnauer said in a statement.

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“Blisteringly quick on Saturday and Sunday, he’s established his reputation as a tenacious racer and together we have enjoyed some fantastic moments.

“If there was ever a sniff of a podium, Checo was ready to pounce, and those five podiums represent some of the finest days in the history of this team.

“Outside of the car, Checo is a true character and a good friend, and it’s been a pleasure working with him for such a long time.”

“Although we will say goodbye at the end of the year, there are still nine races to go and plenty of opportunities for Checo to make some more special memories with this team.”

Perez had announced last season that he had signed a new three-year contract extension with the team but with Ferrari’s decision to drop Vettel in favour of Carlos Sainz, the team has stopped short of denying a move for the four-time champion as being in the works.

The team is yet to confirm Perez’s replacement yet, though it is widely speculated that four-time champion Vettel will be announced soon as the driver filling the seat for 2021.