Sergio Perez has confirmed he will take a sabbatical from motorsport in 2021 if he fails to get the second Red Bull Formula 1 seat for next season.

Red Bull is currently weighing up whether to retain Alex Albon alongside Max Verstappen or replace the Thai racer with a more experienced driver such as Perez or fellow free agent Nico Hulkenberg for 2021.

Perez has been left without a drive for next season after Racing Point opted to sign four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel from Ferrari to partner Lance Stroll ahead of its rebrand to Aston Martin.

Speaking ahead of this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, the Mexican said there has been no progress on his future which he admitted is “out of my hands” as he heads into the final races of the 2020 season “waiting on the decision” to come from Red Bull.

“There’s only one option,” Perez explained. “I’ve been here so many years and I think I’m at the peak of my career.

“But I also want to keep going with a reason, with a plan and with a good project. I think if there’s not a good project that keeps my motivation, to give my 100%, I rather not take it.”

Asked why he feels Red Bull should choose him over its other options, Perez replied: “I think that’s the wrong question to ask myself. I can speak myself very up and certainly put myself in pole position but I don’t think it’s me who has judge myself.”

Perez revealed that if he cannot secure the Red Bull seat to stay in F1 he will not look to race in any other categories but instead take a year out of motorsport altogether to consider his future options for 2022 and beyond.

“I have a lot of interest in other stuff, away from racing,” Perez explained. “Obviously I’m still young. I could see myself later on doing other businesses away from motorsport, not at my 30s you know, but if that comes early I’m happy to consider that option as well.

“I have my family, I want to see my kids growing [up] and other things you know, I can imagine a life without motorsport.

"If I don’t have Formula 1 next year I don’t see myself doing anything else,” he added. “I will take a year to consider what I want to do, if I really miss it.

"Most of the drivers, they retire, then six months they come back and want to do whatever is available. I have to see. I’ve never experienced that.

“My whole life I’ve been into it so I have to see also life out of the sport, how it is, how it suits me, then see if I miss it or if I want to carry on with that life.”

 

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