Sergio Perez was content to bring some more points home for the Sahara Force India F1 Team in the Chinese Grand Prix, especially after an interesting opening lap in which he lost positions into turn one and then collided with Lance Stroll.
The Mexican hit the Williams Martini Racing as the two ran side by side heading into turn ten, and despite the stewards looking at the incident, no penalty was forthcoming, although he was forced to pit due to a puncture.
Once he had switched from the intermediate to the Supersoft tyre, he made short work of both Felipe Massa and Daniil Kvyat, and although he lost eighth to Kevin Magnussen late in the day, he was happy to finish ninth and add two more points to his tally.
“It feels great to come away from an entertaining race with some more points,” said Perez. “The start of the race was not easy because I made a very poor start and lost five or six places before turn one.
“As soon as I dropped the clutch, I went into wheel spin. I recovered some places during lap one, but then there was contact with Stroll in turn ten, which gave me a puncture. I don’t think he saw me on the inside because he didn’t give me any space.
“We definitely made the switch to dry tyres at the right moment and choosing the supersoft was the correct decision because I found a good rhythm straight away and overtook Massa and Kvyat.”
Perez believes the team finished where they deserved to finish in China, and with team-mate Esteban Ocon following him home in tenth, it was a great result for the Silverstone-based outfit.
“You can always look back on the strategy and see things you could have done better, but I think we finished where we deserved in terms of car pace,” said Perez.
“It’s another great result for the whole team and our twelfth consecutive race in the points, which is a special achievement.”