Perez: Mazepin and Norris moves cost me recovery to sixth

Sergio Perez believes incidents with Nikita Mazepin and Lando Norris cost him a possible sixth-place finish in the Formula 1 Dutch Grand Prix after starting in the pit lane.

Listen to this article

Perez dropped out in Q1 at Zandvoort on Saturday after failing to get a final lap in the opening session, prompting Red Bull to take a fresh power unit that resigned the Mexican to a pit lane start.

The Mexican managed to fight his way back to eighth place at the chequered flag after a late stint on soft tyres saw him pass Daniel Ricciardo, Lando Norris and Esteban Ocon to claw his way into the points.

But Perez had been forced into an early pit stop after flat-spotting his hard tyres when trying to pass Haas driver Mazepin, switching to mediums after only eight laps.

Perez then had a run-in with Norris in the closing stages when trying to pass around the outside at Turn 1, resulting in contact between the two drivers.

While Perez felt the team had “managed to minimise the damage” after his qualifying setback, he believed that a top-six finish would have been on the cards without the two incidents.

“Our race was really complicated a lot,” Perez explained.

“With Nikita in the beginning, I flat-spotted my tyres. He moved really late on the braking, and just to avoid him I flat-spotted my tyres, I had to come in and basically start our race again, and I think that cost us probably P6.

“Apart from that it was a sensible race, apart from the touch with Lando as well, which cost a lot of right-hand side of the floor, it took away and I think that also cost us P6.

“But the positive is obviously Max [Verstappen] won the race for the team, and we have our new engine so we're good for the rest of the year.”

Perez felt he had “nowhere to go” thanks to Norris’s move at Turn 1, calling it “unnecessary”, but the McLaren driver made clear he was not willing to simply give up the position without a fight.

“I'm not going to make his life easy, you know?” Norris said.

“I think we can just be happy with racing him. He's in a Red Bull, he's in the quickest car on the track. I think any driver, no matter who it is, no matter if we were just purely racing against Max or Lewis [Hamilton] or whoever on track, you've got to treat them all the same.

“I’m not going to make his life easy because I want those points just as much as he does. So yeah, I tried, I squeezed him a little bit but I didn't force him all the way off the track or anything like that so we both fought each other hard.

“He backed out quite a bit into Turn 1 and I just didn't want to give him a lot of room. I gave him enough, just not all the world. He still managed to get past, none of us crashed, and I think he still went on to overtake another one, so yeah, nothing to say.”

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner praised Perez for a “fantastic” recovery drive after taking the penalty and the first lap flat spot.

“He was the only guy I could see really overtaking,” Horner said.

“To come back there into the points [and score] important points for us today, yeah, it was a very strong race for him.”

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Ten things we learned from F1's 2021 Dutch Grand Prix
Previous article

Ten things we learned from F1's 2021 Dutch Grand Prix

Next article

Bottas to drive for Alfa Romeo F1 team in 2022

Bottas to drive for Alfa Romeo F1 team in 2022
Why Mercedes believes it can make the step F1 needs to fight Red Bull Prime

Why Mercedes believes it can make the step F1 needs to fight Red Bull

The 2022 Formula 1 season was Mercedes' leanest for a decade, achieving just a solitary pole and grand prix win. Yet the team is confident it has got the tools it needs to cast that disappointment aside and return to the front of the field again next year.

How BRM's one-off F1 double defied its rollercoaster history Prime

How BRM's one-off F1 double defied its rollercoaster history

It’s 60 years since BRM achieved its goal and Graham Hill led the team to a world title double. But that was just part of the remarkable story of a unique team that at times overstretched its resources and had its fair share of disappointments.

Formula 1
Dec 8, 2022
The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever Prime

The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever

OPINION: The effectiveness of DRS in Formula 1 remains a topic of debate as the winter break gives a chance for reflection on the racing we saw in 2022. For all of its detractors, perhaps an experiment where DRS is cast aside and the impact this has on racing is in order to truly understand its merits in modern F1.

Formula 1
Dec 8, 2022
The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche Prime

The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche

OPINION: Everything looked set for Red Bull and Porsche to join forces for the 2026 season, before the marriage between both parties was called off. While at the time it looked like a major coup for Formula 1 in gaining both VW Group powerhouses Audi and Porsche for 2026, Red Bull and Porsche have really been spared a potentially fractious relationship.

Formula 1
Dec 7, 2022
How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive Prime

How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive

Glory days for Tyrrell became increasingly infrequent
 after Jackie Stewart’s retirement. But in the latest instalment of his history of the team for Autosport's sister title GP Racing, 
MAURICE HAMILTON recalls how Ken Tyrrell’s plucky and defiantly small team stayed bold enough to innovate – springing a surprise with F1’s first six-wheeled car

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2022
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Prime

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Motorsport.com in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi.

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Prime

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Prime

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022