Sergio Perez believes both he and Max Verstappen will be able to get the most out of the RB19 in 2023, after Perez struggled to match his teammate in the 2022 Formula 1 season.
Red Bull have historically developed their cars towards Verstappen, which has made it difficult for the other side of the garage to match the Dutchman, but during testing Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko said the team had found a balance that worked for both drivers.
“Yeah, I think we have a better understanding of the car,” Perez told the media when asked about Marko‘s comments. “We have a better package, I did feel very comfortable with it through testing, so yeah, we will see.
“I think we have a pretty good base for all of us, we have improved quite a bit the car. So I think the main thing is the balance of it, we made it a little bit more together from all speed ranges, which is very positive.”
Perez is the first of Verstappen‘s teammates to score a win alongside the Dutchman since Daniel Ricciardo, after talented drivers in Alex Albon and Pierre Gasly both collapsed when at Red Bull alongside him.
However, Perez wasn’t asked about his relationship with Verstappen within the team, which seemed on the rocks after the contentious 2022 Brazilian Grand Prix where Verstappen refused to help his teammate having already secured the championship.
Perez hopes Aston Martin can fight at the front
Perez also addressed the strength of Aston Martin, who were the other pacesetters at testing.
While not featuring in the quickest laptime charts, Fernando Alonso‘s blistering race sim was unmatched by everyone else except Red Bull, giving hope to fans that Aston Martin could genuinely fight for wins podiums and this season.
Perez drove for the Silverstone-based outfit for seven seasons through their Force India and Racing Point days, and claimed the team’s only race victory under either guise – at the 2020 Sakhir GP.
“They looked very strong on testing so of course, I think they’re gonna be very strong throughout the year,” Perez said. “They’re a great team and I will be very happy for them to be competing at the front.
“I have good friends there and I will be very, very proud for all the boys there to have taken the step they all deserve.
“So it will be great news also for the sport, you know, to have Fernando fighting at the front I think will be nice.”