Sergio Perez believes that he can show his strongest characteristics in the race, although he admits that Max Verstappen is extremely fast in qualifying, and the goal for the new season is to surpass the potential of the new Red Bull F1 car RB16B.
Perez made his Formula 1 debut in 2011 at Sauber Ferrari and achieved three podiums in the same team in 2012, and after a less successful season at McLaren in 2013 he moved to Force India in 2014 where he stayed until the end of 2020 under the name Racing Point.
After Racing Point, which became Aston Martin this season, decided to hire Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull brought Perez after dissatisfaction with Alexander Albon and thus strengthened their driving lineup for 2021.
Perez is aware of how fast Verstappen is in qualifying, but he believes in his strengths when it comes to Sunday.
“I think the experience is a pretty big thing, to be honest,” Perez said.
“When things don’t go well the pressure hits you hard. And when you’re experienced and you’ve been through it, it allows you to focus on the right things.”
“You technically develop a lot of skills throughout your career and I think I’m in a great position. This opportunity came at a great point in my career and yes…things will work out well.”
“I’m confident in my abilities. I think it’s a matter of time before I master everything, but I see no reason why I wouldn’t be at that level over time when I learn all the things I have to learn about the car.”
“I think Max, from what I’ve seen, is going to be very strong in qualifying. So it’s going to be an extremely high standard in qualifying.”
“My strengths will be seen on Sunday with race craft and race pace. So I think we’re going to be a pretty good match and I hope we get the most out of the car.”
Perez stressed that the goal is to extract everything he can out of Red Bull and try to surpass its potential.
“The goal is to outperform the car,” he said.
“If we have a car that’s good enough to win the championship, we have to make sure we win it. If we have a car that’s good enough for second place, we have to make sure we can win.”
“We want to surpass the potential of the car.”
Perez achieved ten podiums in his F1 career and the last one was also his first Formula 1 victory at the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix, making him the driver who waited for the first victory the most in F1 history (190 races).