Red Bull didn’t want to risk Sergio Perez when they saw Valtteri Bottas had a blowout. The team therefore opted for a second pit stop for the Mexican. Pérez himself was not happy with that choice at the time and thinks he would have made it to the podium without the two stop, he tells RaceFans.
Mercedes driver Bottas suffered a tire blowout after 34 laps during the Grand Prix of Qatar. The Finn had to reach the pit lane on three wheels and lost a points finish. Red Bull Racing brought Pérez in as a precaution, to prevent him from getting a flat tire like Bottas.
‘We were concerned’
The one-stop was risky, as tire wear was very high on the Losail International Circuit. “We saw what happened to the other cars and we were concerned about that,” Pérez concludes. Max Verstappen’s teammate continues: “Of course you want to be on the podium, but the championship is ultimately leading. In addition, I am always a team player.”
played it safe
The points that Perez managed to get could be crucial in the battle for the constructors’ championship. “We missed out on points by playing it safe, but in the end we minimized the loss,” said the Mexican. He does believe that the team wants the best for him and a blowout would probably have resulted in zero points. “Of course finishing fourth is better than nothing, so we are fighting for something important,” concludes Pérez.