Sergio Perez showed his best qualifying result of his career at the Imola Grand Prix. He narrowly missed out on pole position with a second-place finish.
The race was the complete opposite of the previous day for the Mexican. The Red Bull driver dropped from P2 to twelfth place and suffered two spins in the race.
He already lost a place at the start when Verstappen passed him and positioned himself in P1. He was then immediately overtaken by Charles Leclerc in the Ferrari. When Nicholas Latifi retired, a safety car phase was called in which Perez went off the track and was overtaken by two cars. He then tried to get back in line but was not allowed to do so and received a 10-second stop/go penalty. After the restart, Perez spun on lap 38 and slipped through to 12th place.
However, Christian Horner, Red Bull team boss, sees no reason for concern yet and continues to support the “newcomer” in the Red Bull cockpit.
“It’s just time in the seat. It’s different to what he’s used to. He did a mega job yesterday to put it on the front row, only just missed out on that pole position and there’s great races to come from him in the future. You could see in clean air his pace was strong; he just got caught in that DRS train at the end there. But yeah, it was a tough day for all of them today.”
But he also knows that Red Bull could have made up some points on Mercedes if Perez had stayed in the race, because Bottas did drop out in the crash with Russell.
But he also said that the Mexican has the race pace to come back from his mistakes in Imola and be back at the front in the next races.
“So tough for him, and we should have taken some points out of Mercedes today He had good pace in the race and there’s still a long, long way to go.”