Perez downplays fears that 2017 cars harder to drive than 2016

Sergio Perez believes fears about physical demands on drivers in 2017 have been exaggerated - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Sergio Perez believes the 2017-style Formula 1 cars are no more harder to drive than their predecessors, despite the multiple changes they have seen this season.

The new regulations have seen increased downforce levels and more mechanical grip, with cornering speeds much higher than in previous years, and many feared that the physical demands on drivers would be too much to bear for some.

However, the Sahara Force India F1 Team racer believes this is not indeed the case, and during the recent pre-season testing programme at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, felt that the physical effort required was not that much different compared to 2016.

Drivers up and down the grid were asked to work hard on their fitness during the winter months, especially on the neck muscles due to the increased demands and g-forces through the corners.

Perez was able to test for three and a half days in Spain in the VJM10, much like his new team-mate Esteban Ocon, with the eighth day going to test driver Alfonso Celis Jr, but the Mexican feels the fears about the physicality of the new cars has been overstated.

“I noticed almost no difference in physical effort between the 2016 and 2017 cars,” said Perez to Spanish publication Marca. “I think this point has been somewhat exaggerated.”