Perez thrilled with ‘great comeback’ from last to P2

Henry Valantine
Sergio Perez battles Charles Leclerc. Silverstone July 2022.

Red Bull driver Sergio Perez jostles with Charles Leclerc at the Vale chicane. Silverstone July 2022.

Sergio Perez spoke of his pride at making his way back through the field, recovering from first-lap damage to take second place at the British Grand Prix.

After suffering wing damage on the first lap, Perez ‘pitted’ and dropped to the back of the field in the process, but slowly picked off cars in front to make his way back into the top six – before the Safety Car came out after Esteban Ocon had suffered a fuel pump failure.

This bunched the field back up again and with Perez running fourth, he stopped for soft tyres and managed to battle past Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc to take an unlikely second place in a thrilling British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

“Yeah, it was a great comeback,” Perez said after the race. “We didn’t give up and we kept pushing, then the opportunity came at the end and we just stood for it.

“It was a great fight with Charles first of all, then with Lewis. I felt like I had the position and then it was just epic final laps, but it was a good fight within us.”

The Red Bull driver was involved in a first-lap melee at the front with he, his team-mate Max Verstappen and both Ferrari drivers almost four abreast at The Loop corner after the race had restarted following an hour-long delay while Zhou Guanyu was removed from his horror crash at the start – from which he thankfully escaped without major injury.

Perez found himself in something of a sandwich as he jostled for position at the start and felt he did not have many options for his own path around the opening corners.

“Basically I just got squeezed there,” he said. “I had no room to go, Charles was on my inside, Max on the outside so my front wing got damaged pretty badly, so I had to ‘pit’ to change it, went to last place and recovered from there.”

The result for Perez, coupled with Verstappen’s damage which left him down in seventh place, meant he closed the gap to his team-mate at the top of the World Championship to 34 points.