Sergio Perez felt Kevin Magnussen’s block during Qualifying for the United States Grand Prix cost him more in Q3 than it did in Q1, thanks to it forcing him to use an extra set of tyres.
Magnussen was penalised for getting in the Mexican’s way during his first Q1 run, and forced to go out again, the Sahara Force India F1 Team driver used a set of tyres he had hoped to hold back for the top ten shoot-out.
As a result, Perez was left to use a used set during Q3, which left him unable to better tenth on the grid, although he does move up to ninth when Max Verstappen takes his penalty for an unscheduled engine change.
“It’s quite disappointing to end up tenth because I know I had the pace to be at least seventh or eighth,” said Perez. “My qualifying was compromised in Q1 when Kevin [Magnussen] blocked me.
“It cost me an extra set of tyres in Q1 and it meant I went into Q3 with just a single set of fresh tyres. I had to do my final lap on used tyres and had to settle for tenth place.”
Perez hopes to make amends for the disappointment of Qualifying with a good start on Sunday, as he looks for a fourteenth points finish of the season and consolidate his seventh place in the Drivers’ Championship.
“I can’t wait for the race tomorrow,” said Perez. “I hope we can get a good start and make up for some of the ground we lost today.”