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Horner admits he can’t ’rule out any possibility’ of Sainz returning to Red Bull in 2025

Sainz has impressed teams after his incredible performance in Melbourne

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Christian Horner reveals Sainz as a potential candidate for the second Red Bull seat after an incredible performance around Albert Park.

Carlos Sainz on the top step of the podium after clinching the victory at Melbourne. Photo credits: Qian Jun/MB Media via Getty Images
Carlos Sainz on the top step of the podium after clinching the victory at Melbourne. Photo credits: Qian Jun/MB Media via Getty Images

Last month saw the most shocking news hit the F1 world – Lewis Hamilton would be leaving Mercedes and joining the Scuderia Ferrari for 2025 and beyond.

The news meant Carlos Sainz would be out at the end of the season, leaving a hanging question mark of where the Spaniard might end up for the following year.

The start of the season has been strong for Sainz who secured the Prancing Horse’s first podium of the year in Bahrain.

The following race was a difficult weekend for the No.55 driver who had to take the weekend off to undergo emergency appendicitis surgery.

However, still recovering, Sainz bounced back in Melbourne, securing a front-row start just behind the Dutchman.

Two laps later, Sainz overtook the Red Bull after Verstappen started having issues with his car and had to retire due to a mechanical failure.

This saw Sainz cruise along to take a dominant victory at Albert Park, now sitting just six points behind Sergio Perez in the standings.

Christian Horner provides his thoughts

It still hasn’t been confirmed which team Sainz will be heading off to, however, his strong performances have put him on the radar of some top teams; primarily Red Bull.

Christian Horner spoke to Autosport after the Melbourne Grand Prix where he confirmed that he couldn’t ‘rule out any possibility’ of Sainz heading to the Milton Keynes-based outfit:

I think we want to field the best pairing that we can in Red Bull Racing and sometimes you’ve got to look outside the pool as well,” 

You’ve had a very fast, unemployed driver win today’s race. So the market is reasonably fluid with certain drivers.

“Look, based on a performance like that you couldn’t rule any possibility out, so I think you just want to take the time [to decide].

Perez is under looming pressure to produce results to prove he deserves the second Red Bull seat for 2025. The Mexican has also had a strong start to the season, finishing on the podium in the past two races.

However, he had a difficult weekend in Australia – finishing 5th – after suffering from a tear-off issue lodged beneath his car. Horner addresses this in his statement, admitting that Perez isn’t out of the equation and the team will need time before making a decision:

“Obviously, Checo was compromised today. He’s had a great start to the season too, so we’re not in any desperate rush.

“Carlos is the only driver that’s beaten Red Bull in the last [year], so he appears to be our nemesis.”

Leclerc pinpoints that ‘everyone knows Carlos’ worth’

His teammate, Charles Leclerc, has praised Sainz’s performance admitting he isn’t ‘worried’ about his teammate’s future as everyone knows the Spaniard’s ‘worth’:

“I think everybody knows Carlos’ worth in the paddock,” Leclerc said to the media after the Australian Grand Prix.

“He’s one of the highest-rated drivers in the paddock, and he’s been extremely strong every time he was in a Formula 1 car, and he has shown it multiple times. So I don’t think he’s underrated for that.

“I think everybody knows Carlos’ worth, and that’s why I’ve said many times that I’m not too worried about his future because I’m sure that many, many team principals are… He doesn’t say it, but for sure they are speaking with him!

“And I’m sure he will have many opportunities and he’ll just have to make the best choice for his career.”

Featured image credits: Mark Thompson via Getty Images

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