Sergio Perez, Red Bull, Bahrain International Circuit, 2021

Red Bull discover brake problem which kept Perez out of Q3 in Bahrain

2021 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix

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Sergio Perez has defended Red Bull’s decision to try to qualify on the medium compound tyres at the Bahrain Grand Prix, saying it was “definitely the right thing to do”, despite failing to reach the top 10.

He revealed the team subsequently discovered a problem with his brakes which thwarted his effort to gain a top 10 place on the starting grid.

The Red Bull driver missed out on a place in Q3 by three-hundredths of a second after his first of two qualifying efforts on the harder rubber was deleted due to a track limits infringement. Perez said the decision not to switch to soft tyres for his second run, to increase his chance of reaching the final 10, was correct.

“We could have diverted the strategy at the end of one run,” he said. “But I was pretty confident because I lost three-tenths just in one corner by doing a mistake so I was pretty confident that I was going to be able to get the lap time.

“We had a little issue in the brakes that we only found out later and now we understand what went wrong. I think without that issue we definitely should have been through.”

Qualifying on the medium tyres “was the right thing to do”, said Perez. “If you have the car to exploit the maximum result you have to be on the best possible strategy.

“If that means taking some risks we have to take them. Considering that we thought we had the pace it was definitely the right thing to do.”

Ahead of his second race weekend with Red Bull, Perez said he’s made a lot of progress in adjusting to his new environment, and intends to follow his team mate Max Verstappen’s lead on set-up.

“I made huge steps in Bahrain in understanding the car,” said Perez. “It would be very easy to get lost and start chasing one direction that doesn’t make the car go faster.

“We have a pretty good reference in Max, the way he is driving the car, and which issues he’s chasing as well. So I think that’s a key area, to try not to go too far apart. He has a pretty good baseline in terms of how to extract the maximum out of the car so I think we need to be in that operating area as much as possible.”

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2021 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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5 comments on “Red Bull discover brake problem which kept Perez out of Q3 in Bahrain”

  1. apparently the brake pedal broke early.

  2. Translation: He wouldn’t have reached Q3 even if he’d used the softest compound.

  3. Sounds like everything is under control (a few nagging issues that they know about and can address aside) at RBR. Onward and upward SP.

  4. Makes perfect sense to study his setup since Max has been driving RBR products for approximately 7 years now.

  5. Well Checo missed out on Q3 by 0.035s.. So even if the small issue with his brakes could have made the difference. It’s a shame, but hopefully all these kinks get ironed out in the first few races and not when he’s leading a race.

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