Sergio Perez: “We didn’t maximise our potential”

Sergio Perez was downbeat after his worst qualifying session of 2017 - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Sergio Perez admitted to having his most difficult qualifying session of the season so far after the Mexican could only qualify fourteenth on Saturday at the Hungaroring.

Neither Perez nor Sahara Force India F1 Team team-mate Esteban Ocon have been on the pace this weekend, and troubles with the front of the car have blighted the Mexican’s weekend, and although he moves up to thirteenth on the grid following a penalty for Daniil Kvyat, he admitted he could not put together a good enough lap to get anywhere near the top ten shootout.

“It was my most difficult qualifying session of the year,” said Perez. “I haven’t yet managed to feel comfortable with the front end of the car: we made a lot of changes from yesterday, even between third practice and qualifying, but we couldn’t solve the issues.

“In Q2, my first lap was pretty poor and that threw my reference points for the second attempt. In the end, I couldn’t put together a good enough lap and we didn’t maximise our potential.”

Perez hopes to make a strong start as he bids to finish inside the points on Sunday, something he has managed to do in eight of the opening ten rounds of 2017.

“We are starting 14th [thirteenth now after Kvyat’s penalty] and it’s not ideal on a track where overtaking is really tough, but I hope tomorrow we can be strong,” said Perez.

“The strategy options are quite limited, but if we can make a good start, we can fight for points.”