Perez "miles off" in British GP F1 practice due to aero issue

Sergio Perez conceded his Red Bull was "miles off" in a low-key Friday practice for Formula 1's British Grand Prix, after he was plagued by a suspected aerodynamic issue.

Perez "miles off" in British GP F1 practice due to aero issue
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With Friday's first free practice session rained out, neither Perez nor teammate Max Verstappen set a laptime, the pair restricted to just three exploration laps each in FP1.

The weather conditions put a bigger emphasis on the single hour of a dry second practice session for teams to get their set-ups together, with Ferrari's Carlos Sainz leading Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris in the McLaren.

Verstappen finished fourth just two tenths behind, but Perez languished down in seventh over eight tenths behind Sainz.

Afterwards, Perez said that car felt "miles off" from what the team had prepared in the simulator, giving his side of the garage a lot of work to do overnight to get ready for qualifying day.

"It wasn't a great session today, from our preparation that we have in the simulator the car is miles off," Perez said.

"We assume that there's something going on but when we need to understand and it was very, very short, long run there at the end, so not a great start. We are a bit on the backfoot, so we just have to understand what's going on."

Perez divulged an aerodynamic issue was behind his Friday plight, saying the team has a suspicion on what it needs to fix.

"We do [have an idea], I think there are some suspicions on the aerodynamics side but obviously I cannot go too much into detail," he added.

When asked if his team can rectify the situation, he said: "It's going to be pretty, pretty difficult but we've done it before, and I think as long as we're able to get things in the right place...

"You need the confidence around these fast corners, so as long as I'm able to get back my confidence, I think it should be alright.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB18

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB18

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

"Ferrari looked strong but nothing too special so I hope we're able to match them tomorrow come quali."

Verstappen, who completed a less dramatic practice session, admitted that missing out on FP1 running made it difficult for F1 teams as they have less time to find the right set-up.

"It's always a bit tricky, of course, after not driving in FP1 and then FP2 becomes a bit of guessing, let's say it like that, whereas normally in FP1 you just build it up," Verstappen explained.

"It was maybe not ideal but also not a big issue. I think we know what we have to work on and that's what we'll try to do overnight. But again, tomorrow probably it's raining so you have again different kinds of conditions, but it was okay.

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"Sometimes [missing FP1] works for you, sometimes it's maybe not amazing. This time probably it was not amazing, but it was also not really bad you know. We're still in there and still a few things to look at you know, with tyres as well.

"Around here with all the high speed corners the tyres in general wear a lot, so it was always going to be quite tricky to manage the tyres."

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