Sergio Perez’s father has played down any suggestion that Red Bull has a policy of favouritism in the direction of world champion Max Verstappen.
Perez, 33, is under contract both this year and next, but there have been claims of tension in the relationship amid rumours Verstappen is the clearly-preferred driver.
Perez’s father Antonio Perez Garibay, however, says Red Bull actually has “the two best tigers in the same cage”.
As for the claims of favouritism, he told Marca sports newspaper: “That’s a lie, let’s be clear.
“Red Bull is a brand that costs many billions of dollars more than Checo and Max. It is a professional team that wants to win with its two drivers.
“From lap 1 or practice 1, they want their two drivers to be 1 and 2. There is no favouritism for anyone, it is all speculation.
“If the drivers were not at the same level, what is happening would not exist.”
And so while Daniel Ricciardo’s new presence at Red Bull might be seen as clear pressure on Perez, the Mexican driver’s father insists Perez is very comfortable in Formula 1.
“Checo is doing his job excellently and will be in F1 for the next 10 years,” he insisted.
“It is a blessing. Checo no longer had a job two years ago but look at this new stage that Red Bull has opened for him. Checo is in the eyes of the world and one of the great ambassadors of any brand worldwide.
“This is thanks to the support of Red Bull.”