Sergio Perez believes that after today’s qualifying session in Saudi Arabia, he “could do another thousand laps” and not replicate that of his first career pole position, which he claimed on Saturday at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit. Teammate Max Verstappen finds himself in fourth place, putting his Oracle Red Bull Racing car behind the two Ferrari drivers.
“Today was very special to me, I achieved the best lap of my life. I feel like I could do another thousand laps and there is no chance I can get the same lap, with the amount of perfection and risk,” says the Mexican, who beat Charles Leclerc to pole position as the checkered flag was waved in Qualifying 3.
“This is probably the most difficult track for qualifying all season, you know if you’re on pole here then you nailed the lap. You have to be very precise, you must take all the risks and the risk to reward is extremely high but the positions you have to take around this place to get the perfect lap are so hard.”
“We came to Jeddah from a very difficult weekend in Bahrain and the Team have been pushing so hard out here and back in Milton Keynes, so I am extremely happy for them all. If anything, we were focusing more on the race pace so we felt Ferrari had the upper hand on us in qualifying,” the number eleven driver added.
“We will see if we have the pace to beat them in the race tomorrow. I need a good start and then I will try to control the race from there, it is going to be difficult because the Ferraris are quick and Max will be in the mix too. We have a long race ahead of us but I am confident we can come out on top again.”
Max Verstappen – “In the faster corners I couldn’t push as hard“
Verstappen was not happy with the grip levels he experienced in the third and final qualifying session of the day, though is happy with his teammate’s pole position – “Checo did a great job today, he put the car on pole and I’m really happy for him! From my side, qualifying didn’t go the way I had hoped, in Q1 and Q2 everything felt normal but in Q3 the grip was terrible, I couldn’t extract what I needed to from the tyres and I was just sliding everywhere.”
“In the faster corners I couldn’t push as hard as I would have liked and when you don’t feel comfortable on a street circuit you cannot attack the corners. Of course I’m not happy with fourth and we’ll analyse what happened but we have a competitive car and we have a lot to fight for tomorrow as a Team,” the 2021 champion added.
“I am looking forward to it, hopefully we can have a good race.”
The battle between Red Bull and Scuderia Ferrari has been very close, despite the late-race reliability issues leaving the Milton Keynes-based team on zero points heading into this weekend. Red Bull will be hoping to add themselves to the points table on Sunday, after putting themselves in a promising position in qualifying.