Sergio Perez praised Fernando Alonso for their late-race battle despite losing a podium place to him by five hundredths of a second at the finishing line.
Perez took the place by passing Alonso into the Senna Esses at the start of the penultimate lap. But the Aston Martin driver retaliated with a pass into Descida do Lago as the final lap began.
The pair then sprinted up the hill towards the finishing line and Alonso beat Perez to third place by just 0.053s at the chequered flag.
“It was a great fight with Fernando,” Perez said after the race. “I don’t think with a lot of drivers, you can do these types of manoeuvres.
“It was really tight from beginning to the end. It was super-enjoyable, to be honest – I did have a lot of fun. In the end, he ended up getting the podium, but it’s how the sport is.”
Perez’s fourth place finish came after he started down in ninth place on the grid. His starting position had been compromised by arriving at a yellow flag on his sole flying lap at the end of Friday’s qualifying session, which forced him to back off and go from around three tenths off the eventual pole time to over a second off at the end of the lap.
After taking third place in Saturday’s sprint race and gaining five places during the grand prix, Perez said he was satisfied with his drive from the grand prix.
“It was a good performance,” he said. “I think we were just unlucky with the yellow flag there in the end [of qualifying]. But overall, I think it was a good race.”
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