Sergio Pérez qualified inside the top ten at the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in his career on Saturday, and felt the upgraded package brought to the track by his Racing Point Force India F1 Team was working superbly.
The Mexican was pleased to finish as best of the rest on Saturday after qualifying seventh on the grid for the Singapore Grand Prix, with Pérez having advantage more than three-tenths of a second over Romain Grosjean of the Haas F1 Team in eighth, and almost six-tenths of a second ahead of tenth placed Nico Hülkenberg from the Renault Sport Formula One Team.
“It’s an incredible result; I am really pleased with our performance today,” said Pérez. “I think I produced a nearly perfect lap on a track where it is hard to achieve it. We’re ahead of our direct rivals and just behind the leaders.
“We had an advantage of four tenths on the Haas and six tenths on the Renault, and I think it goes to show that our upgrade package is already making a difference. This is a track that normally doesn’t play to our strengths, so I was a pleased at the pace we have shown.”
Pérez hopes to stretch his amazing points scoring run in Singapore but he knows he and the team will need to avoid mistakes and take advantage of any incidents to do so, although he admits that starting on the Hypersoft Pirelli tyre, which does not have much longevity this weekend, could leave him vulnerable from drivers behind that will start on either the Ultrasoft or Soft compounds.
“Tomorrow’s race is going to be a long one – nearly two hours – and there’s never a boring race in Singapore with incidents and Safety Cars influencing the end result,” said the Mexican. “We need to make it to the chequered flag, avoid mistakes and hopefully I can make it eight races out of eight in the points in Singapore.
“Starting on Hypersoft tyres can leave me a bit vulnerable to those behind, but track position is very important here. It’s not as crucial as in Monaco, but I’d rather be ahead than catching up.”