Sergio Perez, Red Bull, Miami International Autodrome, 2022

Perez was “very close” to retiring from race after sensor fault on cylinder

2022 Miami Grand Prix

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Red Bull say Sergio Perez was fortunate to finish the Miami Grand Prix after a sensor fault on his Red Bull caused a loss of power.

He was chasing Carlos Sainz Jnr for third place when the fault struck.

“I think it was a sensor issue that we had,” Perez explained. “It was working well but then when we had the sensor issue we lost like seven seconds in two laps. And then it was just a poor race.”

A Safety Car period later in the race allowed Perez to close up on Sainz. He made an unsuccessful attempt to pass the Ferrari driver at turn one, then fell back and finished fourth.

“Even with the DRS I couldn’t get close to Carlos,” he said. “The deficit on the straight line was quite hard.

“I was pushing really hard to stay close to him on the corners. My tyres were overheating so as soon as I had an opportunity, I went for it. It was too dirty off-line. After that I just couldn’t get close.”

Red Bull have already suffered three retirements this year due to technical faults. Perez is concerned the team is continuing to encounter different problems.

Race start, Miami International Autodrome, 2022
Gallery: 2022 Miami Grand Prix in pictures
“We need to keep working hard because every time we’re fighting different issues,” he said. “Luckily we managed to finish the race. I think at one point it was really close to be over.”

Team principal Christian Horner said Perez had been “very close” to retirement at one stage. “He had an issue with a sensor on one of the cylinders,” he explained. “So he lost a lot of track time.

“The guys managed to move the sensors around and he was down probably 20 kilowatts in power as a result. So even with the advantage of the new tyre he had, he was probably half a second off what the car was capable off in straight-line speed. I think without that he would have probably even been P2 today.”

“It’s something we’ll work closely with HRC [Honda Racing Corporation] to try and understand and ensure it doesn’t happen in the future,” Horner added.

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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...
RJ O'Connell
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15 comments on “Perez was “very close” to retiring from race after sensor fault on cylinder”

  1. The engine was clearly fine. Looked like the Ferrari on the straights.

    1. Without all the information available to the engine management unit, it’s very possible that it had to operate in a more conservative mode: using extra fuel, changed ignition timings, lower boost. It wouldn’t be surprising if he had lower power output because of that. On the bright side, a sensor should be an easy fix.

    2. Its great to have an RBR engineer in the comments, better insights than from Horner himself…

    3. Perez had a solid tyre advantage after that SC but it did look like he just did not quite have the straight line pace when he was trying to get past Sainz @peartree. I guess with the lockup he lost the tow and also probably flatspotted his tyres a bit and that was the end of it.

      1. @bascb I was being facetious. The radio call from perez was quite funny and ultimately Horner confirmed th

        1. Ah, right. Yes it was a fun conversation to follow @peartree

  2. Strange radio call when it happened Perez claimed powerloss and the team topd him everything was fine just lost the tow? This sensor problem explains why he wasn’t able to challenge Sainz. Could have been a RB 1-2

    1. @grapmg The lap charts on this site show that he actually lost more than 7 seconds, so Perez was not wrong.

      1. @matthijs yes it is clear that Perez was right but it is strange that the team doesn’t see this on the data and acknowledge that something is wrong. With all the data available you would expect a quicker respons.

        1. @grapmg I am sorry if I wasn’t clear with my comment. I was indeed agreeing with you :) In the conversation with his engineer, you could almost hear Perez thinking “I don’t care that you think everything is fine, I can feel that it’s not”

  3. Checo look for a different team. You deserve better. 😖

    1. Better? If reliability is “fixed” you can make a case perez is at the best team this year.

      1. Maybe he meant that if Max said he was losing power they’d react more seriously. Maybe so, but I think RBR has been very supportive of Checo. They genuinely seem to like him and there’s NO WHERE he could go that would be a better situation. This is obvious.

  4. After that Jeddah pole lap RB realized they needed to detune Checo’s car or he will ruin everything.

    1. Ridiculous. That pole ended up helping Max. I’d be more open to such a crazy conspiracy theory if he was able to win pole multiple times.

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