Verstappen scathing about Perez performance

Sergio Perez was riding high and so was his ego following his win in both the Sprint and the Grand Prix in Azerbaijan. Red Bull’s Mexican driver had closed the gap between himself and team mate Max Verstappen to just 6 points and reckoned he should in fact be leading the drivers’ world championship.

“I think without all the issues that we had in qualifying in Melbourne, we should be leading the championship. So, definitely there is everything to believe that we can do well,” Perez said after the race.



Perez believed he was fighting for the championship

“I’m fighting for [the championship], but I also know that it’s a massive road ahead, so I I need to keep my head down and just keep delivering.”

This was after four rounds of the twenty two now planned for the 2023 season and what a difference the next four since the race in Baku have made.

Perez alludes to his ‘issues’ in qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix although team boss Christian Horner laid the Q1 departure of Checo fully at the the Mexican’s door stating there were no problems with the car.

Next time out in Miami despite claiming pole and Verstappen starting in P9, Sergio was easily beaten by his team mate and the tale of woe from there has just grown.



Bad blood between Max and Checo

Perez is without a podium in his last three outings meanwhile while his team mate has cruised to victory at each event. Max is no 69 points ahead of Checo who retains second place in the drivers’ championship though now by just 9 points from Fernando Alonso.

All hopes of a first Mexican F1 drivers’ champion have now evaporated into thin air despite Perez driving the same machinery as his team mate.

Max and Checo have a chequered past with the Dutch driver refusing to give up sixth place in Brazil last season to his team mate. He lambasted his engineer when asked to do so and demanded he “never ask that again of me please,” adding, “I’ve given you my reasons already.”

Perez response was to publicly criticise Verstappen stating, “it shows what kind of a person he really is.”

Mercedes seeking F1 regulation changes



Verstappen sarcastic response about team mate

It appears the tensions are resurfacing between the Red Bull drivers following comments made by Verstappen following his recent win in Canada where his team mate could manage just sixth place.

When it was pointed out to Max that Red Bull appeared to now have an unassailable lead in the constructors’ title race, the world champion curtly replied, “well, if I wasn’t here today, obviously it would have been very different for team.”

When questioned further about the big difference between the performance of the two Red Bull cars, Verstappen retorted, “It’s something they (the team) maybe have to work on.”

“But you have to ask them. I was busy trying to get the car in better shape and at a time like this it’s definitely not something you think about. And even now it’s not. I’ll be back in a little while, have a Red Bull and have a meeting.

“Then I’ll go straight to the hotel and have a nice shower. And as far as I’m concerned, everything’s fine.”



Horner backs Perez for now

Since his performance collapse a number of influential F1 figures have questioned Perez’s future place within the team and the spectre of Red Bull switching drivers mid season as they did with Pierre Gasly has reared its head again.

When this has been suggested to Christian Horner he has batted it away with the usual political skill he has for not answering questions directly.

The latest from the Red Bull team boss on his failing driver is, “I think he just needs a good weekend to just lift his confidence,” Horner remarked following the race in Montreal.

“I think he’s had three difficult weekends, three difficult Saturdays, that then puts you on the back foot on a Sunday. And we’ve seen what Checo is capable of, only a month or two ago. 

“And I think he just needs to have a strong weekend to find that confidence. And then I’ve got no doubt he’ll be back.”

Impending ban to be scrapped?



Perez qualifying no better than rookie Piastri

The reality is Perez has had three good weekends this season and five which are unremarkable if not down right shocking. Perez has failed to make it into the final qualifying session at half of the races this season.

Rookie Oscar Piastri along with his team mate Lando Norris have made four Q3 sessions along with Perez but in an underperforming McLaren car that sees their team sit currently in P6 in the constructors’ championship.

Despite Horner’s current backing for his number two driver, the pressure is building on Perez.

Should Checo’s run of poor form continue up to the summer break in four races time, its inconceivable the Red Bull boss can repeat his mantra about him just needing “a strong weekend” to “lift his confidence.”



Verstappen/Perez row  brewing again

The key to Checo’s future lies in the comments his boss made at the recent Spanish Grand Prix.

“Checo, mentally, it’s a really tough thing to deal with. But as I say, I think now, there is that separation in the points, that may actually take the pressure off him a little, and the expectation he’s putting on himself, he needs to let go of that now and just be free to drive.”

However the scathing comments made by Verstappen in Canada suggest there’s more going on behind the scenes than Red Bull are letting on.

READ MORE: Audi name 1st driver for F1 project

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.