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Why Perez's time for excuses at Red Bull is over

Why Perez's time for excuses at Red Bull is over

F1 News

6 comments

Why Perez's time for excuses at Red Bull is over

Why Perez's time for excuses at Red Bull is over

Sergio Perez was signed in an attempt to expel Red Bull's 'second-driver syndrome' and partner Max Verstappen in a bid to snatch the F1 constructors' title away from Mercedes.

But after four races with the team, the Mexican has so far failed to live up to his billing as the solution to Red Bull's problems.

When Perez crossed the line to win the Sakhir Grand Prix for Racing Point, there will have been only a handful of staunch Alex Albon supporters left believing the Thai-British driver had any hope of retaining his seat.

Not only was Perez just a plucky underdog taking the fight to the perceived big boys, but he was now doing it AND winning.

How then, has the second dream move of the Mexican's career started in such a disappointing fashion? Is the second Red Bull seat cursed?

There may not be an actual curse but it certainly must feel like there is to those drivers unfortunate enough to have shared a garage with Verstappen.

For the purpose of this conversation, we are looking at team-mates who have joined Red Bull after the arrival of the Dutchman so Daniel Ricciardo will not feature. Here, Perez will be rated against Albon and Pierre Gasly.

Qualifying struggles

If Red Bull is to mount a serious challenge for the constructors' title, it needs to have a driver alongside Verstappen that is capable of qualifying well.

With both Albon and Gasly, this had been a major weakness of the team, with the former the worst offender. In his 26 races with the team, Albon recorded an average starting position of 7.6.

Things were not much better for Gasly in his short-lived Red Bull career, with an average of seventh.

Despite receiving criticism for his qualifying efforts in Spain and Bahrain, Perez was able to unlock the RB16B's pace at Imola when setting the second-fastest time and beating Verstappen.

With an average starting position of 5.5, Perez has not failed to make a mark but has left Red Bull hoping for more.

In the interests of fairness, in the opening four races of their time with Red Bull, Gasly qualified in an average position of 10.5 and Albon 12.3 although engine penalties played a part in the statistic for the latter.

All drivers, though, are ultimately measured against the stopwatch and, removing any instances where penalties skewed the data, Perez again returns a favourable result compared to his predecessors by qualifying an average of 0.339secs behind Verstappen.

Albon is second-best in trailing by 0.407s with Gasly third with a 0.438s deficit.

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What do you think?
David

The reality is Red Bull is a lesser vehicle than the Merc's and it is only the true brilliance of Max that has them up there. If we had Sergio (who i love btw) and Alex (who like many, never got the chance) they would be back with the McLaren's and Ferrari's. I think the reality of the past 3 seasons has shown this to be true

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David
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Jan 2021
First Poster
David

The reality is Red Bull is a lesser vehicle than the Merc's and it is only the true brilliance of Max that has them up there. If we had Sergio (who i love btw) and Alex (who like many, never got the chance) they would be back with the McLaren's and Ferrari's. I think the reality of the past 3 seasons has shown this to be true

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random person
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Mar 2020
random person

Whilst I agree that Max is a good driver, the fact he has the whole team in his side of the garage gives him an unfair advantage. Ricciardo left because he knew what was going to happen. For proof, look what RBR did in 2014, almost sidelining him in favour of the 4X's wdc winner. Had they put more effort into ricciardo when knows how many more points they could have gotten?

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Rufus15
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May 2021
Rufus15

Racing Point (The Pink Mercedes) Only got 3 maybe 4 evolutions tops during the year. The last one arrived in Mugello for Lance and Perez only got his "update" by the Formula 1 Aramco Grosser Preis Der Eifel 2020...

Set up wise the car was worked on with not so many mayor changes and they almost always got the full 1 1/2 hours of practice on Fridays.

This Year: Red bull is bringing updates every weekend. We all know now that Max does not care and gets on with those right away... We can not say that Perez is not his equal at least when it comes to "evolve" with the car just as fast.

Verdict: Once the rate of updates slows and/or stops = Perez will pick up the pace and might come on top of Max in a few races that gives him the edge on the way he manages his tires over Max's "full send" mode.

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random person
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random person

Perez has already said that he has had to learn to drive like verstappen as RBR have decided any updates will be skewed toward their number one driver. Its like your dad teaches you how to tie your shoe laces and a couple years later mom decides her way is better. It isn't but mom will always get their way no matter what! So if Perez is slower or struggles to get faster, RBR should take the blame!

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Doug71
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May 2021
Doug71

Albon had less than 2 years experience in F1 Perez has over 10 years and still can’t really outpace Albon think he would have been much better this year if they left him in the car , buy Red Bull needed the inside scoop to Merc from Perez

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random person
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Mar 2020
random person

Why would Perez know anything about Mercedes? The simple fact is that the RBR is verstappens team and the team play to his strengths and not the second driver. Their driver burn rate is the highest in the sport, ever.

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