Perez fears qualy will get ‘very messy, very quickly’

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Sergio Perez and Yuki Tsunoda side by side. Qatar December 2021

Sergio Perez and Yuki Tsunoda side by side during practice. Qatar December 2021

Sergio Perez thinks that qualifying in Saudi Arabia could get “very messy, very quickly” due to traffic problems.

The first practice session of the weekend was fairly uneventful, but the same couldn’t be said for FP2, with a number of drivers running into traffic. Perez was one of many drivers who was unable to set a fast time on fresh soft tyres as a result, unable to find clean air for an entire lap.

Given the fact that the track is a narrow street circuit but also extremely fast and features blind corners, such traffic is hugely dangerous, and multiple drivers came close to crashing.

Indeed, while Checo is enjoying the track, he thinks things could get messy in qualifying.

“It’s a really nice fast and fluid circuit out there, a really enjoyable one, a lot of fun.” he said in the paddock afterwards.

“It’s going to be tricky I think in qualifying with the traffic, the traffic management. It’s going to be [a case of] trying to be there in the right places, you know?

“We saw what happened when everybody was on the soft tyre at the end… It can get very tricky, very messy, very quickly.”

Saturday isn’t the only day that he feels could feature some carnage either given the punishing nature of the track, shown by Charles Leclerc’s big crash at the end of FP2.

“It’s going to be very, very tricky to get the perfect lap out there,” said the Mexican.

“But then I think in the race, it’s a long race ahead of us and anything can happen so we just have to stay in there.

“I think it will be an interesting race,” he added.

“A lot of things can happen, we saw Charles today, it’s a track where if you make a mistake it can be extremely costly so we’ll just have to stay in there and be on it as much as possible.”


It wasn’t a good day as a whole in terms of pace for Perez, with the Red Bull man finishing FP1 and FP2 down in P11 and P9 respectively while his team-mate took P2 and P3.

He puts that down to traffic though and is confident he;ll be in the mix when it matters.

“No, no I don’t think so,” he said when asked if Friday running was a reflection of his true pace.

“I think there is plenty more to come tomorrow so hopefully we are able to find the right balance, the right pace to be in contention tomorrow.”