Sergio Perez: “It was a day of two halves”

Sergio Perez was forced to sit out the afternoon session due to an exhaust issue - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Sergio Perez began the opening day of pre-season testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Monday in a positive manner, but ended the day a little downbeat after mechanical issues prevented him from running in the afternoon.

The Mexican completed thirty-nine laps of the Spanish track in his Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM10 during the morning session, but an exhaust issue saw him stuck in the pit lane for the whole afternoon session, and ultimately finished seventh fastest.

Perez now hands the car over to his new team-mate Esteban Ocon for day two, and he hopes the team can make up for lost time and gather more data for the new car.

“It was a day of two halves,” said Perez. “The morning was very productive: we managed to do a lot of what we had planned and we tried some different set-up options and tyre compounds.

“Things were looking quite positive throughout the morning and we had the chance to learn a lot from our new car. Unfortunately we didn’t run in the afternoon as a precaution and that cost us some track time.

“Hopefully tomorrow we can make up the lost ground with Esteban in the car: with a solid day, we can complete the rest of our programme and move forward with the plan.”