Sergio Perez: “A podium in Monaco is a very special moment”

Sergio Perez - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

For the third time in his Sahara Force India career and for the sixth time in Formula 1, Sergio Perez stood on the podium after a strong drive in difficult conditions at Monaco.

The Mexican made important strategy calls that enabled him to leapfrog a number of drivers and run inside the top three, with Perez revealing that the team allowed him to make the decisions on when to make the pit stops.

Perez was at times the quickest driver on track, and was able to keep the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel at arms length until the chequered flag.

“A podium in Monaco is a very special moment,” said Perez. “It’s one of my best ever races, especially when you see how difficult the conditions were today: you had to concentrate so hard and it was easy to make a mistake.

“The key to my race was the strategy and we got things just about perfect today. The first difficult decision was when to fit the intermediate tyre and we delayed this as long as possible. The team said it was my call when to come in and it paid off because we managed to jump a couple of cars, including my team-mate.

“The switch to dry tyres was another key moment because I pitted early, a lap before [Nico] Rosberg and Vettel, and managed to jump ahead of them. The soft tyres worked really well, but I knew I needed to look after them and it wasn’t easy because there was pressure behind from Vettel for most of the race.

“Everybody in the team deserves this result and I want to dedicate this podium to Vijay Mallya in particular.”