Red Bull team principal Christian Horner is one of the most influential members of the team’s backroom staff.
Along with technical advisor Dr Helmut Marko, Horner plays a big role in deciding who stays in the Red Bull seat.
The Milton Keynes-based outfit has been known to be impatient with its drivers in the past.
While there is absolutely no chance that they do anything to Max Verstappen, who looks almost certain to win a third consecutive world championship, the future of his teammate Sergio Perez is a little hazier.
Checo has over a year left on his deal, but his inconsistency, coupled with Max’s mooted discontent with him stemming over from last year means that Red Bull is likely to employ strict rules with him.
So far this season, Checo has failed to show the sort of consistency that the team would have been hoping for.
Although Horner believes there is no immediate threat to Perez’ seat as far as next season is concerned, he did have some words of advice for the Mexican to ensure his stay is longer.
“Checo will be our driver next year,” Horner said.
“I think for 2025, it’s just good always to have options. If Checo delivers, we’ll keep going with him.
“If he doesn’t, for whatever reason, then we won’t be just restricted to AlphaTauri drivers, because there’s an awful lot of drivers up and down the pit lane that would like to drive a Red Bull car.”
There had been some suggestions that Daniel Ricciardo’s hasty appointment at AlphaTauri has been done with a view to put pressure on Checo and ensure the Honey Badger himself is in tune with the sport in case he needs to be summoned by the energy drinks manufacturer.
“The whole purpose of AlphaTauri and Toro Rosso before was to be training drivers as potential candidates for Red Bull Racing,” Horner said.
“That’s why, with Nyck [de Vries], it didn’t feel like he was going to be a Red Bull Racing candidate, so then the argument you put is, does it make sense to keep going?”