Former driver warns Sergio Perez against ‘pointless and counterproductive’ claims

Michelle Foster
Sergio Perez not happy in the Red Bull garage. Monaco May 2023

Sergio Perez not happy in the Red Bull garage. Monaco May 2023

Sergio Perez needs to calm down with his claims he can beat Max Verstappen to the World title with Alain Prost calling it an “almost impossible mission”.

Perez went into this season dreaming of a title tilt and while it did look to be on the cards after Azerbaijan, the Mexican driver just six points behind Verstappen in the standings with each of the Red Bull drivers having taken two wins, the pressure is, as Christian Horner put it, now off.

Perez has seemingly been consigned to the team’s number two role after dropping more than 50 points behind Verstappen in the last three races.

Speaking after the Spanish Grand Prix, Red Bull team boss Horner conceded it was “very tough” for Perez to take on Verstappen, adding to Sky F1: “I think now there is that separation in the points, that may actually take the pressure off him a little and the expectation he’s putting on himself.

“He needs to let go of that now and just be free to drive.”

He also, says Prost, needs to keep his thoughts to himself if he wants any chance of rallying the team behind him.

“A driver’s game is always to try and tip the balance in his favour, whether it’s the set-up of the car or the contribution of the team. And that’s where Perez is wrong,” the four-time World Champion told L’Equipe.

“He needs to make Max Verstappen doubt him and change Red Bull’s mind about him.

“As we know, Perez is tackling an almost impossible mission. And in order to achieve it, he must above all not shout so loudly about his desire to beat Max.”

Prost also doesn’t believe Papa Perez is helping his son’s cause. recommends

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Antonio Perez recently told Por Esto that Perez’s rivalry with Verstappen “is the new edition of Senna and Prost at McLaren. We have two tigers in the same cage. They think alike, they act alike.”

Prost says such proclamations are “counterproductive”.

“His entourage isn’t helping him either,” he added. “When I read a month ago that his father told journalists that his fight with Max was similar to the one I had with Ayrton, it’s pointless and counterproductive.”

He’s not the only one who feels that way with former F1 driver Gerhard Berger pointing out that while Perez is doing his best, he’s no Prost to Verstappen’s Senna.

“I recently read that Verstappen and Perez is the repeat of Senna against Prost,” the former F1 driver told Kronen Zeitung.

“Yes, Verstappen is in this league and yes Perez is doing his best to stay close to Max. But nevertheless, to me, it looks like Verstappen goes it alone.”