Sergio Perez Blames “Other Political Factors” for Failed McLaren F1 Stint

Published 03/17/2021, 8:05 AM EDT
Sergio Perez of Mexico and Racing Point walks in the paddock during previews ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Australia at Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)


Sergio Perez will continue his journey in F1 but this year he swaps out the pink overalls of Racing Point for the midnight blue ones of Red Bull. He made his official debut for the team during pre-season testing for them in Bahrain. This is his second opportunity with a “big” team after his rather short-lived stint with McLaren. He would be looking to right the wrongs of that time. 

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The Mexican had a very encouraging testing regime for Red Bull and looked at home in the Honda-powered car. He looked comfortable and didn’t show signs of unfamiliarity with the vehicle. He’s hoping he continues this momentum into the new season and takes his opportunity to perform at a better team.

Sergio Perez feels Red Bull are in a better place than McLaren was in 2013

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In an interview with F1 insider Tom Clarkson on his podcast ‘Beyond the Grid’, Perez contrasted the experience at Red Bull with his experience at a then ‘big’ McLaren in 2013.

The Mexican thinks Red Bull are in a great position. He said, “It just happens in a better time in my career. I’m at a better point and the team is also in a good momentum as well. So, I just think that in general there is a lot of hope on that. There is definitely good direction and the team is solid.”

BAKU, AZERBAIJAN – APRIL 29: Third place finisher Sergio Perez of Mexico and Force India celebrates on the podium during the Azerbaijan Formula One Grand Prix at Baku City Circuit on April 29, 2018 in Baku, Azerbaijan. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

The 31-year-old compared it with his one-year stint with McLaren. He explained, “When I came to McLaren, I think it was probably a wrong time for the team. It was a year where everything went backward and in that regard.”

Perez felt he was in a  good place in terms of driving then but there were many factors behind the scenes which didn’t help the atmosphere. He said, “I don’t think driving-wise, I did bad. I out-qualified Jenson [Button] there and so on. I think in general it was a good team but there were other political factors in it. I think right now it’s in a better place.”

Can the Mexican help Red Bull in 2021?

Red Bull have signed Sergio Perez with the intention of helping the team compete with Mercedes more closely in the Constructors Championship. This comes after the relative flux they had in the second driver position since Daniel Ricciardo left them.

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MEXICO CITY, MEXICO: Sergio Perez of Mexico and Racing Point waves to the crowd from the garage during final practice for the F1 Grand Prix of Mexico at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)

They’re getting a solid operator who has been a serial “points getter” wherever he’s gone. He amassed multiple podiums during his tenure with the relatively inferior Racing Point.

This ability to get podiums out of favorable situations marks him out as perfect for Red Bull. Let’s hope that helps them in challenging Mercedes in 2021. 

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Ashish Thomas

211 articles

Ashish Thomas is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having followed motorsports since age 5, Ashish holds an enviable knowledge of F1 history. Ashish holds extensive experience in sports writing, having previously worked for SportsQuest and Fansided.

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