Sergio Perez, McLaren, Melbourne, 2013

Perez: Finding a 2014 seat will be “very difficult”

2013 United States Grand Prix

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Sergio Perez, McLaren, Melbourne, 2013Sergio Perez admits he is left in a “very difficult” position after losing his seat at McLaren two races before the end of the season.

Perez said he had little warning his place at the team was in jeopardy. “I found out a couple of days before you find out so was very late decision,” said Perez in the press conference at the United States Grand Prix.

“I had no idea it just came as a shock to me because the team always was giving a good feedback to me, everything was pretty much settled down and I was going to stay at the team.

“But then something happened in the last few weeks that they decided not to and it puts me in a very difficult position now to look forward for my future.”

Perez said he has “some options” for 2014 but doesn’t want to make up the numbers next year. “I want to stay in Formula One but I will not stay in F1 just to stay.”

“If I don’t find the right option for myself then I have to look at something else. But I’m pretty confident something will happen and hopefully find a good seat.”

He acknowledged his 2013 campaign had been “probably one of the worst in terms of results from myself” but added “I think I have a lot to offer to a team”.

Perez said he did not feel let down to have lost his seat before the end of his first season at McLaren.

“It’s been a difficult year and people from the outside can think whatever they want but inside the team every single person that works in the team know the amount of pressure we are having, everyone from Jenson [Button], myself, Martin [Whitmarsh], everyone.

“With McLaren the year that we had was so disappointing for everyone so they had to do some changes and, yeah, they had to change me and that’s the reason.”

“McLaren is a great team,” he added. “I have nothing bad to say about them. I really want to wish them the best.”

“We have had a very difficult season all year long. It was definitely not what I was expecting and also no one at McLaren was expecting it especially when I signed for them, they were such a competitive… they had such a competitive car. And it is not what we have right now and we didn’t have it all season long.

“So there is no secret it’s been a disappointing year for both parts. At the end McLaren decide to do another route. I have to find my own route and hopefully I can find the best possible seat available for my career because I am only 23 years old, I have a lot to give to the sport and I really hope I find a good seat.”

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63 comments on “Perez: Finding a 2014 seat will be “very difficult””

  1. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    14th November 2013, 17:39

    He can do a Grosjean, return to lower categories to keep pushing until he gets a new offer (for talent or for cash he can bring)

    1. I think Grosjean is an exception not the rule. He was very lucky to get another go in F1. Look at all the recent drivers who have been pushed out, tried to return but so far have not: Kovalainen, Alguersuari, Petrov, Kobayashi, Chandhok, and D’Ambrosio to name a few. Some have had money, others talent, but they all tried hard to get back in and failed. It’ll be tough for Perez to return in 2015 should he fail to get one for 2014. F1 moves as fast off the track as on it, and Perez despite all his potential, sponsorship money and fantastic 2012 season will quickly be forgotten.

      1. Don’t forget that Nico Hulkenberg was in a similar situation, being pushed out of Williams (because of money though) yet he too managed to find a way back to a race seat.

        1. @oel-f1 I can’t believe I forgot Hulkenberg! That’s a blunder by me. Still, I think the point I made is still kinda valid, it’s hard to have an encore in F1.

      2. petebaldwin (@)
        15th November 2013, 10:20

        @colossal-squid – Kovalainen, Alguersuari, Petrov, Kobayashi, Chandhok, and D’Ambrosio all, as you say, have talent or money. The difference between them and Perez though is that he has talent AND money.

        Guiterrez isn’t going to be in F1 long term and with the potential of a mexican GP coming up, it don’t think it’ll be long before Perez is back.

        Things change very quickly in F1 and as things stand, Lotus are currently deciding between money and speed. A driver with plenty of both has just entered the market….

        1. Guiterrez is starting to look a more complete driver than Perez. Although it seems I am the only one to think so.

    2. You get in the midfield in two ways, one being bringing hard cash and the second being a very good/gifted driver. The true stars will eventually rise to top tier teams while all others are soon forgotten. Perez, Kobayashi, Buémi, Heikki, D’Ambrosio, Chandok, Petrov, Alguersuari, …

      McLaren is taking another gamble this year. They were very full of Perez, let’s hope they do not make the same mistake twice.

    3. This is just dispeakable from McLaren

      1. *di-spic-a-ble

  2. With Perez, i think if he would have handled the PR game a little better at McLaren and would have quit dogging on the car every session, they would have retained him. We all know this year’s car is atrocious, even McLaren themselves know it, so all Sergio did was rub salt in the wound with getting angry and blaming the car every week. It’s called a team for a reason, there is no I in Team but there is an I in Sergio.

    1. Sergio blamed the car?!?!?

      Button has been moaning ever since he joined Mclaren. In fact there is no one who blames his incompetence on machinery more than Button

      1. I agree completely, but also you have to look at things from McLaren’s perspective. Button is a WDC(as much as some hate to admit) and has the right to moan and complain about the car. Perez was a first year driver who has been in multiple incidents with other drivers, and yet still complained about the team and the car. I have nothing against Perez, but if i were a new McLaren driver i wouldn’t be downing my team, but instead doing everything i could to motivate everyone and try to help fix some of the problems. At least then the team would know you gave it everything over the season, and would be much more inclined to sign you long term.
        I just find it funny to see drivers complaining all the time when most of us are too poor or too tall (or both) to have that chance, and want it bad.

      2. @todfod – Sergio blamed the car?!?!?

        Yeah, that was my response! I don’t follow Perez that enthusiastically, but I’m certainly not a hater, and I definitely wouldn’t have said that he left in me (a casual Perez fan) the impression that he was being overly-critical of the team (in the Di Resta mode, for example).

        Again, I’m not a fanatic for Perez, so I won’t lament his departure, but it definitely causes me personally to feel a bit sad for the guy and to empathize w/ how discombobulating it can be to receive radically mixed signals during a short period when your contract ultimately isn’t renewed. Can’t blame him for jumping at the chance to join Macca in the first place though! WHo knew the 2013 car would be such a dog? Dang…bad timing.

      3. In fact there is no one who blames his incompetence on machinery more than Button

        There’s a driver named Paul DiResta… maybe you’ve never heard of him?

        1. Actually that is a very true statement……

        2. @beejis60 Paul who ? ;-)

      4. Button blames the car because it is terrible, AS ADMITTED by the team. JB Also took 2nd in the WDC in 2011, was in the hunt in 2010, and had a decent 2012 campaign, being plagued by unreliability. He’s definitely valuable and can be very quick. He an Magnussen should make a good pairing.

        1. I was just going off of what i’ve seen on the few interviews he’s given, although i’m stuck with NBC Sports here in the US so there’s probably a lot i don’t get to see :p

          I do hope he finds a good drive though, it would be terrible to end a career that way. Especially when the man has the grapefruits to push the car like he did at Monaco.

        2. and had a decent 2012 campaign, being plagued by unreliability


          Clearly we weren’t watching the same 2012 season. I remember Button with a reliable Mclaren, in fact, a championship winning car. But instead Button decided to qualify outside of Q3 and spend most of the season fighting backmarkers instead of fighting at the front with his teammate.

      5. Button’s British. Simple as that.

        1. And Perez is Mexican!

  3. his options are Sauber, Lotus or Force India – all in all not great.

    1. If Perez manages to get some big Mexican dollars in his bag, Sauber seems very realisitc. Of course, that is if Hülkenberg gets a contract at Lotus.

      1. And if Lotus need the money, they can choose between Perez and Maldonado. Hard pick?

      2. What happened to Perez’s sponsorship? Wasn’t he bringing a sponsor to McLaren for 2014? Or is the implosion of Mexico GP (For 2014) putting paid to that?

        1. There was never anything to suggest he was bringing a sponsor for 2014. Only minor sponsorship perhaps.

    2. It would certainly be nice to see Perez back at Sauber!

  4. I would very much like to see him replace Di Resta at Force India

    1. I don’t rate Di Resta very high, I agree that Force India would be stronger with Calado/Perez line-up. Or alternatively Bianchi/Perez

      1. @ardenflo
        Bianchi is already confirmed at Marussia

        1. I know, just meant that would be better than those two slow thirty old fellas that got now.

    2. Anyone would be better than “I’m throwing my toys and going home because my team is terrible” DiResta. I think if he had to give a compliment to the team his head would explode.

      1. To all you guys there . Does Di Resta have some good sponsorship to stay afloat in FI ? Just trying to find out his chances and see what role FI can play in this driver market hustle.

  5. I’ve said this before. It would bring a lot of peace to our twitter feeds, newspapers, teams and drivers if teams were obliged to turn in their driver line-up before a certain race, say Marina Bay.

    Teams got time to look for it and after that race all is settled. Drivers know what there future is and can concentrate on racing.

    1. I understand what you are saying but I don’t think the likes of BE want less controversy, less silly season, a regimented approach to contracts. That’s not what sells newspapers. The more controversy, the more ‘shock and awe’ the better.

    2. @ardenflo Not sure it is possible and this would just translate all this some months earlier and open up for conspiracies because a driver is known to leave for another team …

      But a good option would be to oblige team to say if they retain or not their driver for next year before a certain date. They don’t have to announce line up but at least a driver pushed out has the opportunity to look somewhere else and still has a chance …

      1. Yeah, they ruined most of Perez his chances for 2014 now really….

  6. I think it was very unfair from Mclaren to make the decision so late. It’s looking likely that Perez may end up without a seat next year, which is wrong.

    1. Yeah it’s pretty beat that they pulled out rug from him like this. I’ve read reports that he was getting good constructive feedback and had strong support w/in the team (if nothing more, at least acknowledgment that the car this year was so bad that it seriously inhibited Checo’s technique of using, what was it – oversteer? – to get around the corners?) but that a couple high-level people on the technical side really had it in for Checo b/c they believed his developmental feedback to be inadequate and not likely to improve.


    2. petebaldwin (@)
      15th November 2013, 10:24

      It’s hard on Perez but in all fairness, he wasn’t ever going to get the Ferrari or Red Bull seat, McLaren have got rid and Mercedes are full so his best option is Lotus which is still a possibility. I think a lot is going to depend on how much money Slim decides to chuck about.

  7. Mclaren (ie. Martin “slow coach” Whitmarsh) really screwed up Perez career there. Left very late to come up with a decision, now there are no seats left next year. His indecisive and timid approach is ridiculous. It is becoming increasingly clear that he is the wrong guy to lead a team like Mclaren, they deserve better.

    1. Whitmarsh doesn’t have to do anything as he himself has exit strategy, provided he can woo Ross Brawn to McLaren which could attract the very best in 2015 …..even the likes of Fernando Alonso should the prancing horse have another dog of a year in 2014.

      As for perez he’s performance has been g0d awful all year, I don’t care what kind of car you have you should be able to put up points.

  8. He should return to Sauber. The team will be able to get rid of the average at best Guttierez and still keep the Telmex sponsorship.

    1. Would that make much of a difference? Is Sauber’s current Mexican not as good as their old one?

      1. In my opinion no. He’s not as good as Perez. He’s done nothing to impress me all season except one or two races (Spain and Japan cames to mind).

        1. Against Gutiérrez:
          He had a terrible first quarter, where he was completely overwhelmed by car and competition, but got back from it. It’s true that a more complete and more experienced Hulkenberg got the hang of things quicker, but that was to be expected. He has been beaten in qualifying by his teammate, but, which of the Non-WDC drivers would stand a chance against 2013 Nico?, how many can you name?

          For Gutiérrez:
          His team has been all praise towards him because he supposedly did a 2012-Massa with car development (he used to be their test driver, remember).
          I rank him close behind Alonso and Maldonado as one of the best starters this year.
          He did lead the field, it might not mean points but he didn’t leave a stinky trail behind either.
          Yes, Hülk destroys him qualifying, but have you checked his race laptimes in the second half of the season? right there with the STRs, on par with his teammate who has often gone backwards from his unrealistic starting positions.
          Racecraft? He’s exponentially better than what he showed in Australia, and in my opinion, better than Pérez at this stage in his career. He can be problematic to get around when fighting for position, but that’s what you’d want from a racing driver. So far the only complaints have come from Hamilton, but he complains about everybody.

          I say he is better than Pérez.

          1. You may be right. But I still cannot stand that this guy is driving along with legends of the sport like Alonso, Hamilton, Vettel. Same story with the even more mediocre Chilton. It’s just doesn’t feel right. I don’t know if you undertand me…

  9. It’s over for Perez, he won’t get a seat for 2014 and he’ll probably go to WEC or Indycar, by 2015 Gutierrez will leave F1 too and we won’t have Mexican drivers again for another 40 years.

    1. So you´re happy if there´s only caucasians driving in F1, right?

      1. Yeah as a Mexican i’m really happy about that[Sarcasm], i’m just feeling very pessimistic about the prospects of Mexican drivers now.

  10. Sergio’s biggest mistake is that he is not called Lewis Hamilton. The team seem desperate for Lewis MK2 and this saga makes the Red Bull driver development programme look a bit soft!

    1. I think it had more to do with his general lack of pace, consistency, race craft and overall ability to score points…

    2. That’s F1 isn’t it… If you’re in a top team and you haven’t had a breakthrough, you’re out. The only reason he’s at McLaren in the first place is because of his breakthrough podiums with Sauber last year.

      1. @wpinrui
        How many of those did he get?

        1. 3 I believe. One in Malaysia (2nd), one in Canada (3rd) and one in Italy (2nd)

  11. When you’re a pay-driver and there is no pay, there is no driver either.

  12. makes me think perez was never anything more than just a stop-gap while Magnusson got prepared to make the step up to f1, i think mclaren always intended to promote Magnusson and either button or perez were going to have to make way, and since perez is a way behind button in terms of points, out the door he goes

    1. If he did exceptionally good, he wouldn’t and it would have been Jenson facing the cut. But instead he got him self involved in plenty of minor incidents and it’s never a good thing when in such big team your team principle encouraging you by saying you have potential and it’s part of the learning process. In McLaren you deliver, not learn.

      If he was up to the task, he would have cherished every session to beat Button. Instead he turned out to be a good match for Button, McLaren want someone who can beat him.

  13. So what have learned from all this?

    a) Mclaren only hired him because there was the promise of a big bucks and a title sponsorship deal. Now that it isnt coming, bye-bye Sergio, thank you very much..which leads us to b)
    b) Sergio Perez is/was a pay driver
    c) Ferrari are laughing because they probably knew something that Mclaren didnt

    1. Ah I remember now. Back then everyone bashed Ferrari how idiot they were when they didn’t sign Perez and blah blah blah.

  14. An interview comes to mind . Alonso smiling coyly here

    I am sad for Perez as I feel he got tricked . Mclaren wanted him to use elbow tactics to be agressive . Then he started being too aggressive . Then Button outscores him . Then he gets the sack . KM may be very very good . But I will be watching 2014 with keen eyes . Mclaren’s last hope I believe is KM being a super kid for now at least .

  15. Imagine if we have a very wet race in Sao Paulo (Interlagos), and McLaren pulls a Sauber-2012Malaysia trick and Perez gets a shot at the win.
    It is not likely, but it would be very interesting if did get an incredible result before leaving. (Hulk comes to mind)

  16. Someone got punched in the face.

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