Red Bull driver Sergio Perez has revealed that he has begun working with a mental coach to help him overcome any difficulties he may have encountered this season in Formula 1. The Mexican driver has been helped psychologically with coming to terms of trying to compete with team mate Max Verstappen in the Red Bull team.
While he looked set to challenge for the world title at the start of the year, Mexico’s Sergio Perez has slowly but surely seen the gap between himself and his team-mate in the world championship widen, particularly after a number of mistakes at the wheel of a car that was difficult to drive.
Up until the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, which he won, Sergio Perez was driving a car that was not suited to his driving style, but the Mexican managed to make the best of it until technical changes introduced to the RB19 at the Miami Grand Prix made life even more difficult for him, sending Sergio Perez into a downward spiral.
After Miami, Sergio Perez struggled to qualify in Q3 on Saturday and, although the Mexican made up ground in the race on Sunday, the gap to his team-mate in the championship continued to increase race after race.
“At the start of the season, the car didn’t suit me perfectly. But the cars evolve over the course of the season. After Miami, things got worse, and I had another car that didn’t suit me very well,” explained Sergio Perez to Dutch media outlet De Limburger.
“After that, I didn’t manage to get into Q3 on several occasions, so my confidence plummeted. As a result, my driving was also less good.”
Difficulties over the summer
Perez admits: “I’ve had a lot of difficulties this summer…”
“At the start, I was competing for the world title, but from May onwards, that changed. I was driving without confidence, and at one point I just didn’t get out [of Q2]. It was very hard because you’re driving for a top team and the pressure to perform increases quickly.”
“But I didn’t give up and kept working hard with the engineers to sort out the problems. My confidence came back when I realised I had won races on my own earlier this year [Jeddah and Baku].”
“I dare say I’m back to 100% now and I also have a renewed belief that I can go for the world title next year.”
Arrival of a mental coach
Sergio Perez also revealed that all the difficulties he had encountered on the track had had an impact on his mental state and therefore on his personal life off the track. The Mexican was therefore prompted to hire a mental coach to help him with the psychological impact in an attempt to regain his motivation.
“When you’re going through such a difficult period at work, it’s hard to be happy at home with your wife and children,” admits the Red Bull driver.
“So I hired a mental coach because my family deserves to have this happy father at home. With my coach, I worked to become the best version of myself at home, but also as a driver.”
“As a result, I’ve got my positivity back. I’m 33 now, but I’m still learning every day, on the track but certainly off it too.”
“That’s part of the reason why I’ll never tire of Formula 1. It’s really incredible how much I’m still learning from the sport,”
After the Japanese Grand Prix, where he retired, Sergio Perez is second in the drivers’ championship, but the Mexican is 177 points behind team-mate Max Verstappen and 33 ahead of Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton.
MORE F1 NEWS: Vettel’s comeback talks confirmed by team
In a surprising turn of events, former Formula 1 World Champion Sebastian Vettel is on the verge of a sensational motorsport comeback, possibly as early as 2024. The revelation, which comes directly from the team boss of a prestigious racing outfit, has sparked excitement and speculation among motorsport enthusiasts around the world.
Four time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel made the announcement he would… READ MORE ON THIS STORY