Sergio Perez notes of struggling on the medium tyres in F1 Belgian GP, as Christian Horner says easing off to come home.
It was a better F1 Belgian GP weekend for Red Bull’s Perez who ended up second to Max Verstappen despite taking the lead from Charles Leclerc on Lap 1. The Mexican had the lead until the pit stop after which the Dutchman sailed through him.
After that Perez couldn’t keep up with Verstappen especially on the medium tyres where he seemingly did not have pace. But overall, he was pleased to be back again on podium for consecutive races amid a string of bad results considering that he is in a Red Bull car.
“I think just getting that form back,” he said. “We were on the podium last weekend and now, and I think, having these sort of races in clean air, is where you learn a lot and you make those steps in the coming races, because my last few races have been a bit of… yeah, very hard to get a proper read on them, because the way you have to race with dirty air, and so on, so that to me I think is where we’re going to be learning the most on that stint on free air and the second stint as well.
“I knew that it was quite crucial for my race to get Charles on lap one. We had a good launch but he also had a good start so it was just about making sure we got him into Turn Five. It worked well and we were able to do, basically, our own race from that point on. I think we managed to do a good first stint.
“I did struggle quite a bit on that Medium tyre, especially with the rain. Felt like I lost a bit of temperature on it. We never really got a good read on that tyre. I think it was pretty obvious, most of the field went back onto the Soft tyre and yeah, had a good moment into 11 when the race was very tricky, the conditions were very tricky at that point,” summed up Perez, who finished 22.305s behind Verstappen.
His boss Horner conceded that they will analyse why the medium tyres didn’t work for Perez and once he lost that momentum, he steadied his ship and raced to finish a comfortable second rather than push to try and catch Verstappen.
“The first stint was pretty good,” said Horner. “I think on the medium tyre Checo definitely wasn’t as comfortable as Max was. And then on the soft tyre at the end it was about managing the tyre. We got a little worried that the tyres you can see we’re starting to open up a bit and we didn’t want to get into too much depth. So it was about just closing out the race.”
Here’s Max Verstappen on his Belgian GP