Sergio Perez takes step closer to automatic one-race ban after Jeddah penalty

Michelle Foster
Sergio Perez with the mic in the press conference.

Sergio Perez has eight penalty points.

Slapped with another penalty point in Saudi Arabia, Sergio Perez is just four points away from a race ban and he’ll only lose one point on his super licence in September after 15 races.

Perez was in trouble with the stewards in Saturday night’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix as he left his pit box in an unsafe manner and forced Fernando Alonso to have to brake.

Sergio Perez has eight points since 2023’s Singapore GP

With the majority of the field pitting when the Safety Car was deployed for Lance Stroll’s crashed Aston Martin, Perez pulled out after his pit stop into the path of Stroll’s team-mate.

The stewards ruled that Alonso had to “take evasive action to avoid a collision” with Perez having left his pit box before getting the go-ahead from Red Bull.

“What made the situation worse,” they noted, “was the fact that car 11 left the pits when there was a red light shown to it (indicating that it should not go out of the pit box).”

Perez was hit with a five-second time penalty, although that did nothing to change the race result with the Mexican driver taking second place ahead of Charles Leclerc.

However, the penalty point he received could have consequences later in the year as he’s now up to eight and won’t lose one until 17 September.

There are 15 races between now and then and if Perez is hit with another four points, he’ll face a one-race ban as any driver who collects 12 penalty points over a rolling 12-month period receives an automatic one-race ban. recommends

F1 2024: Head-to-head race statistics between team-mates

F1 Driver of the Day: Who has won the award in F1 2024?

Sergio Perez: My bad on that one

Perez admits it was his mistake as even though he didn’t have the release sign from Red Bull, he didn’t see anyone coming down the pit lane so he went.

“Unfortunately, then we were compromised with such an early Safety Car, and that meant that basically everyone just pitted,” he said.

“And when I was going out, it was actually my mistake, because I was told by the team to hold it back.

“But in hindsight, I looked on the right and there was nobody there when I looked. But in hindsight, I think the penalty was correct and that pretty much compromised our race.

He added: “You are able to have a bit of awareness of what’s going on around you, definitely.

“And when I looked at the mirror, there was no one. I saw that I didn’t have the proper release. But I didn’t see anyone.

“So sometimes the team can be a little bit slower than you in the car. But this time was the other way around.

“So… Yeah, my bad on that one, but still happily didn’t change a race.”

Read next: Saudi Arabian Grand Prix conclusions: Bearman’s next move, Ricciardo’s decline, more