Red Bull: Too brutal to have pitted Perez for F1 fastest lap

Red Bull thinks it would have been "brutal" for Sergio Perez to sacrifice a podium at Formula 1's United States Grand Prix just to deny Lewis Hamilton fastest lap point.

Listen to this article

Perez was running third in the closing stages at Austin, with second-placed Hamilton on course to grab the extra championship point that comes from taking the fastest lap.

With the title battle between Verstappen and Hamilton so tightly poised, one of the features of this season has been of Mercedes and Red Bull trying to deny their rival the extra fastest lap by using their second drivers.

Most famously at the British Grand Prix, Perez had been running in 10th place and looked on course to move up the order when Red Bull ordered him to give up a points scoring finish to take fastest lap from Hamilton.

At Austin on Sunday, Perez was not in a position to have a free pitstop, with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc within range in the closing stages, so a late call for fresh tyres would have dropped him out of the top three.

And, on a day when Perez had battled against illness and dehydration caused by a broken drinks system, Red Bull agrees it would have been too much to ask him to give up the podium simply to hurt Hamilton.

"It would have been brutal to pit Checo and take him off the podium," said Horner when asked by Motorsport.com about why they opted against going for the fastest lap.

"Leclerc was obviously too close behind. In the collective position of the team it was better for Checo to take the points. So that's what we did."

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing, 3rd position, lifts his trophy

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing, 3rd position, lifts his trophy

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Perez's third place in Austin was his second consecutive podium finish, and comes at a time when Red Bull knows he can play a crucial role in the championship battle.

Horner said that what Perez delivered in America, against the backdrop of being ill, was impressive and shows that he is now getting on top of the RB16B car.

"The way he managed the race, you could see his confidence is growing," Horner told Sky.

"That's the second race in a row he's on the podium now. His home race is coming up. He's finding his form, which is crucial for us at this time of the year."

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Alonso: F1 needs to be as strict in enforcing rules as football
Previous article

Alonso: F1 needs to be as strict in enforcing rules as football

Next article

The positives Mercedes sees in Austin F1 loss

The positives Mercedes sees in Austin F1 loss
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

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
The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon Prime

The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s teammate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy Prime

How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Prime

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Prime

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second-best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot.

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022