Red Bull ‘make rare offer’ for F1 star to replace Sergio Perez and block Mercedes move | F1 | Sport

Red Bull have reportedly made an offer to Alex Albon that will give them an option to sign the Williams star when his contract expires at the end of the 2025 season. The Thai-British driver is currently in high demand and is seen as a strong option to replace the Ferrari-bound Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes.

Albon previously spent 18 months with the Red Bull team in 2019 and 2020 but struggled to produce consistent results during the latter of those campaigns, before being replaced by Sergio Perez, who was ousted from Racing Point to make room for Sebastian Vettel’s arrival.

After spending 2021 in the F1 wilderness, Albon returned to the grid with Williams, where he has since rebuilt his reputation and established himself as the lead driver for the Grove-based team. His stock is now at an all-time high after beating Logan Sargeant 21-0 in the 2023 qualifying battle and claiming 27 of the team’s 28 total points. 

According to a report from Motorsport-Total, Red Bull are interested in bringing Albon back into the fold in the future as a replacement for Perez. The German news outlet have explained that the reigning world champions have proposed a right-of-first-refusal offer to the 27-year-old that would give them the option to sign him for the 2026 season.

The Williams star is also seen as one of the most convincing options to assume Hamilton’s seat at Mercedes in 2025, and his close friendship with George Russell only adds to his appeal following the strongest season of his career to date. If he were to agree to Red Bull’s offer, however, he would effectively be blocking himself from being able to join Mercedes or any other F1 team.

Albon, though, has underlined his commitment to his current employers amid all the speculation around his future. Speaking after the launch of Williams’ 2024 challenger in New York, he said: “My whole focus is on Williams and that’s where I see myself. The rate of progression, to me, is also very important, so time will tell. I feel like I’m very close to my peak. 

“There’s always improvements to be done and there’s still areas to improve, but generally, with my experience now and where I am, I feel like I am deserving of a car that can score podiums and fight for wins. And that’s just being totally honest with how I see myself.

“More than anything, I want that team to be Williams. And that’s where I put all my work and all my efforts into. And outside of that, that’s just really: how does it fall into place? It’s very clear to me, especially when you see the driver market, there’s a huge interest in teams wanting the same driver for 25 and 26. 

“That’s how it looks like it’s playing out. And let’s see about that. Realistically I want to be with the team. If the team is where I want it to be, it will be a long-term contract. We’re gonna go all the way or nothing. That’s my idea with it.”

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