Sergio Perez, Red Bull, Monza, 2023

Perez encouraged by “best Friday in a while” despite spin into barrier

2023 Italian Grand Prix

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Sergio Perez was upbeat about his performance in practice for the Italian Grand Prix despite spinning into a barrier at the end of Friday’s second session.

The Red Bull driver ended the day third fastest behind Carlos Sainz Jnr and Lando Norris, but ahead of team mate Max Verstappen.

He admitted he made a mistake at the final corner, Alboreto, in the final minutes of Friday’s running. “I understeered off on the exit and tried to keep it nailed,” Perez explained. “I thought I had it under control, but then I just touch a little bit the gravel, and that was game over.”

His car spun through the gravel trap and its rear wing made light contact with a barrier. However Perez does not believe it will prove a significant set back for the rest of his race weekend.

“It doesn’t look too bad to me, the damage, the hit was fairly small,” he said. “I don’t think we lost anything at the end, I think two laps. So nothing representative in that regard.”

Before his crash, Perez said he felt in good shape. “The positive is that the car is performing well. I’m feeling comfortable with it and I think we are in a good position for the rest of the weekend. I really felt like we had a very strong Friday.”

“I think definitely this has been the best Friday in a while for us,” he added.

Perez has struggled to mount a challenge to his team mate since the opening races of the season. Verstappen has won all of the last nine races, during which time Perez has only made four appearances on the podium.

Despite his crash, Perez said he is “definitely” off to a strong start at Monza. “We’ve been working really hard. I think we’ve found some positive steps in the car so hopefully we can show it all tomorrow and on Sunday.”

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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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4 comments on “Perez encouraged by “best Friday in a while” despite spin into barrier”

  1. I know he’s trying to be positive, and good on him honestly, but there’s just something very sad about this being “his best friday in a long time” when he’s been behind Ferrari in both sessions, and once again behind his teammate in the first as well… And he binned the car through a rather silly mistake, if we’re honest about it.

    It’s just, it wasn’t all that great, mate.

    1. It’s practice and we have no idea of fuel levels and run plans. If he genuinely feels happy with the car good for him. Over on F1TV they were comparing the rear wings on Max and Checo’s car. It appeared Checo was running a lower drag wing, I will be interested to see if they converge on the same wing or if they each do their own thing.

  2. I loved the way it looked like he was looking like he was *just* going to stop before hitting the wall, but just as his rear tyres hit the tarmac access road to give him the grip he’d need, he eased off the brakes, all 4 wheels unlocked, and he backed it into the wall unnecessarily. Oops.

  3. It’s a dry weekend for a change. He’ll be there when it matters in Q3

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