Racing Point’s Sergio Perez has made it clear that he won’t accept “any blame” for his positive COVID-19 test.
The Mexican has missed the last two rounds of the 2020 season at Silverstone after he tested positive ahead of the British Grand Prix.
But he will return for this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, taking back over from Nico Hulkenberg behind the wheel of the RP20.
Speculation has been rife though in Perez’s absence surrounding his actions before the test.
He returned to Mexico after the Hungarian Grand Prix, and there have been reports suggesting he took several risks, such as meeting with his sponsors.
But Perez was clear that he followed all the FIA protocols, and will not accept any blame for contracting the virus, saying he was just “unlucky”.
“I’ve put everything out in a video,” he said during a press conference before the Spanish Grand Prix.
“Where I went, any place I visited, anything I did after Hungary.
“Everything was done with extreme precautions with very extreme lines. I was well aware what was going on.
“I think I was just unlucky. I haven’t done anything different to the rest of the paddock. So I was just the unlucky one to get it. That’s one thing. But I’m not willing to take any blame for that because anyone can get it, I was just the unlucky one.”
Nice chat with @SChecoPerez who replied “b***s**t” when I asked if the stories about him meeting Carlos Slim in Mexico when he visited his mum, are true. He also said team have shown no indication that he isn’t racing with them next year and that’s what he expects to happen.
— Rachel Brookes (@RachelBrookesTV) August 13, 2020
And Perez said he is continuing to take the same precautions as he did at previous race weekends now he is back in the paddock for the Spanish Grand Prix.
“To be honest, before that, we were already so conservative and took so many precautions that nothing really changes, whether you are positive or negative. The procedures are very, very similar,” he said.
“So the amount of precautions that we take have been already in place. [There’s] nothing really more or to do differently than what I’ve done and what we are doing already.”
Hulkenberg put himself back on the Formula 1 radar after a solid showing in his two races for Racing Point, with his P3 in qualifying for the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix proving to be the highlight.
But on that subject, Perez said: “What I’ve heard from the team is that they want to move on with me. It won’t be long before the rumors disappear.”
Asked if he was in talks with other teams about a seat for 2021, Perez replied: “No, not really, given that my position with the team looks quite secure.
“That’s the feeling that I’ve been getting. We are fully on this package, and we want to continue as well.”