When Sergio Perez got the call to fill in for the outgoing Lewis Hamilton at McLaren in 2013, it must have been the happiest moment of his fledgling career. But little did the young Mexican know that it was soon going to turn sideways and that he would be languishing at the bottom half of the grid for the next 6 years until Red Bull came along.
Yes, his tenure with Force India/Racing Point lasted for 7 years, but his last season finally gave him the car worthy of his talents. After being informed of his sacking in favor of Sebastian Vettel mid-way through 2020, he drove with a chip on his shoulders.
This culminated in him winning his maiden race in Sakhir and even better, earning a drive at Red Bull. Now, after such a long gap, he is returning with a top team.
But who’s to say that his time with Max Verstappen won’t be a similar nightmare? “Experience-wise, understanding things like the technical aspect is a lot better.
“I am more complete as a driver, I have grown up as a person, as an athlete; I am very different,” said Perez in ‘Talking Red Bull’ podcast.
Not only did he mention his growth during these years but also assured us all that he will come out unscathed during his Red Bull tenure, unlike McLaren, “So, you can be relaxed that I will make it work this time!”
While McLaren had the brand value and recognition of a top F1 team, their performances were anything but. In contrast, his current one is Mercedes‘ closest rival for the World title. So, he is looking forward to it.
“I was waiting all my career to get an opportunity with a top team, which finally came. And I think it came at the right moment for me.
“I’m so much looking forward to work with engineers, with Max to push the team forward… This opportunity comes only once in your life; So, I know that and I am ready to make it work.”
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