“It would be a great problem to have” if team orders threaten home win – Perez

2021 Mexico City Grand Prix

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Sergio Perez refused to be drawn on whether he would give up a chance to win his home race in order to help his team mate’s championship chances this weekend.

The Red Bull driver, who won the Azerbaijan Grand Prix earlier this year, has the chance to be the first Mexican to win their home Formula 1 race.

However with team mate Max Verstappen leading the championship Perez, who is mathematically out of contention, could be asked by his team to give up victory if he is leading his team mate in the closing stages of Sunday’s race.

Speaking in Sunday’s press conference at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Perez declined to state whether Red Bull would allow him to win the race ahead of Verstappen.

“I think it would be a great problem to have from my side. But it always depends in the situation because most of the decisions are normally taking during the race, during the heat of the event. So I think that depending on the circumstances, we’ll see. But I’m pretty sure that the whole team, Red Bull, everyone wants me to win this weekend.”

Perez has enjoyed significant home support at the race in the past and a large crowd is expected this weekend. He said Red Bull are as keen as his fans to see him win this weekend.

“I think everyone is so enthusiastic,” said Perez. “Everyone at my team, the crowd. It’s a very special venue for us. It’s a very intense fight. And we’ll see through the race.

“But I’m pretty sure that everyone in the team, if there’s a race they want me to win it’s this one. So I’m sure I have full support from everyone in my team.”

Perez said he doesn’t “see much point in discussing” whether Red Bull will address the possibility of team orders being imposed before the race.

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“Probably we’ll see where we are on Saturday and if it’s worthwhile having that conversation,” he said. “But there’s no guarantee that we’re going to be in that position. I think it will be a great problem to have as a team but right now we haven’t discussed anything.”

Daniel Ricciardo, who joined Perez for the first of today’s press conferences, said he wouldn’t be prepared to give up a home win for his team mate.

“Right now, my answer is no, I would not,” said the McLaren driver. “If it was the last race of the season and that position swap literally meant the world title or not, then maybe that’s a more complex decision-making process.

“But a home win, that’s the thing that you dream of as a kid. And if obviously you’ve earned it on track then I feel like it should be yours for the taking.”

A large crowd turned out to see Perez perform a demonstration run at the Paseo de la Reforma in Mexico City yesterday. He said he was “so pleased” to be able to race at home again after last year’s race was cancelled due to the pandemic.

“After a year that we didn’t have a race in my home country I’m very happy to be back. The reception has been incredible, the enthusiasm from the people, really nice.

“Yesterday we were at the Reforma, one of the most iconic streets in Mexico City, a lot of fans there. I’m just so happy to see that people are really enthusiastic about the weekend.

“Everything is sold out. The promoter just told me that he is trying to find a way to put more grandstands but there is no more space. A lot of friends are calling to get them a ticket but I don’t have anything. It’s very cool. It’s a great weekend.”

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2021 Mexico City Grand Prix

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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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6 comments on ““It would be a great problem to have” if team orders threaten home win – Perez”

  1. He’s lucky and I’m glad for him to even have the car such that this is a topic. As well, I think it is up to Max to at least be ahead of LH no matter where SP is, so that if SP can be in that position for the win then at least he is taking those points away from LH, and theoretically Max would still gain on LH if he does what he needs to do anyway, which is as I say to be ahead of LH no matter where SP is. A Checo-Max 1-2 would be amazing.

    1. Even if Verstappen is ahead of Hamilton, Red Bull will always want to maximize the points and therefor will order Perez to let Verstappen pass.
      It is still a very tricky road to the championship at the end and probably will only be decided in the last race.

  2. Jose Lopes da Silva
    4th November 2021, 20:26

    Yeah, this is a little like asking Barrichello if he would give a Sao Paulo win to Schumacher in 2004, after having been beaten by him all season. A scenario difficult to imagine.

    1. Massa did that for Raikkonen in 2007, but it was the last race of the season and it sealed the WDC, the scenario Ricciardo said would make him consider.

      Seven points is a lot, Lewis had both won (2008) and lost (2007, 2016) titles by smaller margins, so asking that is completely understandable.

      Perez dream scenario is Turkey 2006, Massa’s first win, with Alonso second and Schumacher third. Not a home win, but you know what I mean.

  3. This is ofcourse IF Sergio is ahead of Max which if i am honest seeing the whole season isn’t likely.

  4. I don’t understand these comments from drivers, to me it’s a no brainer, hamilton got a lot of points through team orders and 7 points are very important this year as the situation is, I think a number 2 (in performance, not because of contract) who refuses to let a number 1 past who’s fighting for the championship is selfish and should be fired.

    You can bet mercedes would order bottas to let hamilton past in finland, you need to fight fire with fire.

    Not to mention the constructor’s championship seems already won by mercedes, so the driver’s title is red bull’s only chance, let’s throw it away to make an underperforming driver most season get a home win.

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