Perez: Last-corner mistake cost me Imola F1 pole

Sergio Perez was left ruing a final-corner mistake during Formula 1 qualifying for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, saying he “should have been on pole”.

Perez bounced back from a difficult Friday that saw him crash into Esteban Ocon in FP1 and struggle to feature with the frontrunners in FP2 by qualifying second at Imola.

It marked Perez’s best-ever F1 qualifying result, beating his previous best starting position of third, as he fell just 0.035 seconds shy of pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton’s lap time.

But Perez believed he did have the pace to snatch pole position away for Red Bull in the dying moments of qualifying after Hamilton failed to improve on his final lap.

“I should have been on pole today," Perez said.

“I did a mistake on my final corner, so I think it's everything positive.

“We just have to make sure that we keep progressing, and tomorrow is what matters."

Perez was satisfied with how he managed to recover from the incident on Friday with Ocon, and admitted he was surprised by the turnaround over the weekend.

“I have to say well done to the team," Perez said. “Yesterday I made a mistake and I made them work hard during the day, so it's a good recovery.

“But the most important is always showing progress. I never expected to be here today where we were yesterday. We've been improving, but it's just important to be P2."

Read Also:

Perez will start Sunday’s race on the soft compound tyre, giving him a theoretical pace advantage over Hamilton and teammate Max Verstappen, who starts third, in the opening stint.

“I think anything can happen tomorrow," Perez said. “We are on a different strategy to Lewis and Max. And so, it's gonna be interesting to see what we can do.

“Most important [is to] get those points, get battling, which is priority at the moment."

Verstappen was just 0.087 seconds shy of Hamilton’s benchmark, but was also left ruing a scrappy final lap in Q3 that cost him a possible front-row spot, calling it “not so good".

“In Q3 I went off at Turn 3, so a bit messy, just not a great lap, but it can’t be good every time," Verstappen said.

“We'll see what went wrong, but it was definitely not the easiest thing. But still P3, which is a good starting position.

“It’s going to be interesting because we have the two cars on different tyres so let's see how that will work out.

“We'll try to make it difficult for [Mercedes]."

shares
comments

Related video

Norris admits he "effed it all up" in Imola qualifying

Previous article

Norris admits he "effed it all up" in Imola qualifying

Next article

Hamilton never expected to beat Red Bulls in Imola qualifying

Hamilton never expected to beat Red Bulls in Imola qualifying
Load comments
Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool Prime

Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool

Wind tunnel work forms the bedrock of aerodynamic development in Formula 1. But as Pat Symonds explains, advances in virtual research are signalling the end of these expensive and complicated relics.

Formula 1
Jun 13, 2021
Why Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour Prime

Why Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour

The newspapers, naturally, lingered over Max Mosley’s tainted family history and niche sexual practices. But this is to trivialise the legacy of a big beast of motor racing politics. Stuart Codling weighs the life of a man whose work for safety on both road and track has saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but whose penchant for cruelty remains problematic and polarising.

Formula 1
Jun 12, 2021
Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture Prime

Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture

Sergio Perez has spent most of his career labouring in Formula 1’s midfield, wondering whether he’d ever get another shot at the big time. Red Bull has handed him that chance and, although life at the top is tough, the Baku winner is doing all the right things to get on terms with Max Verstappen, says BEN ANDERSON

Formula 1
Jun 11, 2021
What the data tells us about the F1 2021 title fight Prime

What the data tells us about the F1 2021 title fight

Formula 1 has been tracking car performance using timing loops mounted every 200m around each circuit – to the extent that it was able to anticipate Ferrari’s 'surprise’ pole in Monaco. PAT SYMONDS explains what this means for this season and beyond

Formula 1
Jun 10, 2021
The weighty issue F1 needs to find a balance with Prime

The weighty issue F1 needs to find a balance with

OPINION: After consecutive street races with contrasting highlights, one theme stood out which has become a prevalent issue with modern Formula 1 cars. But is there a way to solve it or, at least, reach a happy middle ground to help all parties?

Formula 1
Jun 10, 2021
The changes behind a 'feel-good' F1 result in Baku Prime

The changes behind a 'feel-good' F1 result in Baku

OPINION: The Azerbaijan Grand Prix had elements that make Formula 1 really exciting – unpredictability and shock results. This resulted in heartbreak for several of the championship’s regular contenders and joy for others who rarely reach the ultimate limelight. And one of those on the Baku podium is riding a wave of form he’s keen to continue

Formula 1
Jun 9, 2021
The human cost to replacing Formula 1's cancelled rounds Prime

The human cost to replacing Formula 1's cancelled rounds

OPINION: With the global pandemic still lingering, Singapore's grand prix has been cancelled for 2021, with more looking likely to follow. Although Formula 1 has TV deals and profits to chase, retaining a 23-race calendar could be most harmful to those who sacrifice the most for the championship.

Formula 1
Jun 8, 2021
Azerbaijan Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Azerbaijan Grand Prix Driver Ratings

An eventful weekend in Baku full of incident and drama lent the race result an unusual feel, as three drivers scored their first podiums of the year. But it wasn't the eventual race winner who scored top marks in our driver ratings

Formula 1
Jun 7, 2021