Perez unconcerned by Red Bull teammate Verstappen

Sergio Perez has expressed his enjoyment of the challenge the Jeddah Corniche circuit gives to Formula 1 drivers over one lap after taking pole position for Sunday's 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix


Although Fernando Alonso will be giving Sergio Perez plenty to worry about into Turn 1 of the 2023 Saudi Arabian GP, both will be conscious of the progress of Max Verstappen, who starts 15th following a driveshaft failure in Q2.

Previously Verstappen had come from 14th on the grid to win last year’s Belgian GP, and with Red Bull dominating all three practice sessions, the reigning champion still has a chance of taking victory.

“We certainly have a good car,” Perez told the press after qualifying.  “It’s probably where we are a little bit better than the competition, but yeah, it depends. Our race pace was very strong on Friday, so we’ll see. 

“Hopefully, for the team, we [can] come back and get maximum points because these weekends are very important. The competition [is] only going to get closer. 

“I am not going to approach the race tomorrow thinking about Max. I have to make sure I’m able to keep the lid on the initial laps. If I’m able to do that, I think I can focus on my race.”

Sergio Perez in action at the Saudi Arabian GP | Mark Thompson/Getty Images

A fan of Jeddah

Sergio Perez praised the Jeddah Corniche‘s circuit ability to bring the maximum out of a Formula 1 car after securing pole position for Sunday’s 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Perez, who had secured his maiden F1 pole in the 2022 Saudi GP, repeated his heroics in Saturday’s qualifying session producing a lap over two-tenths quicker than Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc’s best time.

“Jeddah, I enjoy [quite] a lot,” said Perez.

“When you have a good car that you can push around this place, you really feel the F1 cars coming alive and getting a clean, good lap, you know, when you nail it. 

“The Q3 run one was quite a good jump. I had a good jump from all my previous laps, and that meant I was able to get the pole.”

Sergio Perez of Red Bull Racing (C), Second placed Charles Leclerc of Ferrari (L) and Third placed Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin after 2023 qualifying Saudi Arabian GP | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Second lap ruined by Turn 1 lock up

Although Red Bull and Perez had the pace to improve on their first time, the Mexican was unable to after ruining his second lap at Turn 1.

Perez was one of several drivers caught out by Turn 1 and Turn 2 as Nyck De Vries, Logan Sargeant and Fernando Alonso all hit trouble at the first couple of corners. 

“I just had a front lock going into Turn 1,” explained Perez. “[In] Turn 1 and Turn 2, it was so easy just to lose two-tenths straightaway there, especially with the low downforce that we’re running.

“Just nailing that combination of corners will require a lot of temperature on our tyres as well, so yeah, just in general, getting that lap, nailing [it], was really nice.”

Ed Spencer
Ed Spencer
FIA accredited journalist
- Advertisment -


Pascal Wehrlein and Mitch Evans in action at the 2024 London E-Prix | Formula E

Formula E 2024 LIVE: London E-Prix Finale – Wehrlein becomes champion after huge drama

Welcome to this Formula E LIVE BLOG for Round 16 from the 2024 London E-Prix! This Sunday, we bring you real-time updates,...
Lando Norris during practice at the 2024 Hungarian GP | McLaren F1 Team

Norris blames McLaren for team orders debacle: Issues warning

Lando Norris blamed McLaren for the team orders chaos at the 2024 Hungarian GP as he waited until Lap...
George Russell in action at the 2024 Hungarian GP | Mercedes

F1 2024 Hungarian GP – Fastest Lap

George Russell set the fastest lap of the 2024 Hungarian GP with a 1:20.305 on a weekend when he...
Oscar Piastri in action at the 2024 Hungarian GP | McLaren

Oscar Piastri Takes Debut F1 Victory at Hungarian GP Amid McLaren Drama

Oscar Piastri has clinched his first-ever Formula 1 victory at the 2024 Hungarian GP, after a dramatic race filled...
Oscar Piastri of McLaren leads Lando Norris and Max Verstappen into Turn 1 at the start during the 2024 Hungarian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 2024 Hungarian Grand Prix – Race Results

The 2024 Hungarian Grand Prix race weekend took us through the midpoint of the Formula 1 season, and Oscar Piastri took the chequered flag to...
Sergio Perez during practice ahead of the 2024 Hungarian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 LIVE: 2024 Hungarian GP – Piastri wins after Norris finally follows team orders

Welcome to this F1 Live Blog for the 2024 Hungarian GP! This Sunday, we bring you real-time updates,...
Lando Norris during practice at the 2024 Hungarian GP | McLaren F1 Team

Lando Norris confident McLaren will win after bagging 2024 Hungarian GP pole

Lando Norris is confident McLaren will win the 2024 Hungarian GP, owing to their impressive performance in race simulations...
George Russell in action at the 2024 Hungarian GP | Mercedes

Angry George Russell calls for Mercedes internal review after qualifying disaster

An angry George Russell called for a review within Mercedes after poor qualifying execution at the 2024 Hungarian Grand...
Oscar Piastri in the pit garage at the 2024 Austrian GP | McLaren F1 Team

Oscar Piastri hints at Lando Norris battle for 2024 Hungarian GP win

Oscar Piastri pointed to the long run down to Turn 1 at the Hungaroring as a potential way to...
Lewis Hamilton in action at the 2024 Hungarian GP | Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton targeting podium at 2024 Hungarian GP

Lewis Hamilton is aiming for a podium at the 2024 Hungarian Grand Prix although he concedes McLaren and Red...
- Advertisment -