A shocking turn of events saw Sergio Perez being disqualified from the British GP qualifying in Q1, putting only the 16th fastest lap time in the dominant Red Bull RB19.
A red flag during the session had all of the drivers in the pitlane and Sergio Perez, who was on the brink of being disqualified, was put on the slick tires despite the track being reported to be wet. Luckily, the track had dried up enough for him to put in a lap, which he did, and was the fastest of all the drivers who had put in laps before him. However, since the track was massively improving, the other drivers were faster, pushing Sergio Perez down to P16.
This is the fifth consecutive time that Sergio Perez hasn't qualified for Q3 during a qualifying session. What started during the Monaco GP because of a crash seems to have carried forward to the British GP.
Numerous fans were shocked to see Checo's disqualification. Although some believe that he will be able to climb positions during the race since his car is so dominant, others feel that he might not have an extended contract with the team anymore.
Marcel Kiefer, former Red Bull esports athlete, tweeted:
"Perez is definitely not long in that seat anymore."
"No way he has another season at the top."
"His time is limited, has to be."
Former F1 world champion predicts Red Bull could replace Sergio Perez
As mentioned, this is the fifth consecutive time that Perez hasn't qualified for Q3 during a race, which isn't a great track record being in the most dominating team and car this season. It has been widely speculated that he might be replaced with another driver, considering Red Bull's reputation for doing so.
Damon Hill, a former F1 world champion, suggested that it could be Daniel Ricciardo who replaces him. Although he has been serving as the team's reserve driver this season after returning, Hill further mentioned that he might not be 'fit' enough. Express.co.uk quoted his statement:
"Is Daniel Ricciardo fit enough to come back? That’s what the noises are. Maybe that plan is simmering away. I think they’d want a fresh face."
As of now, he feels that this 'fresh face' could potentially be Lando Norris, but the young driver still has a long contract with McLaren, extending till the end of the 2025 season.