Sahara Force India F1 Team’s Sergio Perez believes he had the potential to be higher up the grid for tomorrow’s race than the eighth place he qualified in today.
The qualifying session at the Baku Street Circuit was difficult for most drivers, with several interruptions from yellow flags and fairly strong winds to contend with. Perez qualified one place behind team-mate Esteban Ocon, effectively cementing Force India’s place as best of the race for the race.
The Mexican believes that he and the team were not fully able to maximise the potential of the car – which looks vastly improved from the uncharacteristically mediocre performance from the first few races of the new season.
“I am pretty happy with our performance today,” Perez commented.
“It’s been a good day for the team even though we probably had the pace to be further up the grid. I don’t think we fully maximised our performance and it was a very complicated qualifying session.
“There were so many yellow flags and the wind made things very complicated, which is why there were so many errors. I couldn’t get a proper clean run until Q3.”
Perez is relying on the fact that the race will throw up unpredictable situations that he hopes he will be able to capitalise on. The race in 2017 was chaotic, with several safety cars and the eventual race winner, Daniel Ricciardo, coming from a way down the grid.
“The race tomorrow will be all about being in the right place at the right time and making the most of the opportunities as they arise. The track suits us and I believe there is plenty of potential to make up a few more places.
“Days like these are a great motivation for everyone in the team and show we are making progress. We were the top team in the midfield today but it’s tomorrow that really counts.”