Sergio Perez is looking forward to taking advantage of a “huge difference” when he returns to work with Red Bull for the 2022 season.
The much-loved Mexican driver was heading into the unknown during the 2021 winter break as he was selected by Red Bull to become Max Verstappen’s new team-mate, representing a rare foray outside of their own driver programme by the Milton Keynes-based team.
It was not all plain sailing for Perez as he got to grips with a completely new team and car but, overall, ‘Checo’ was a notable improvement on those that came before him – Pierre Gasly and Alex Albon – and was quickly retained for the 2022 campaign.
Now, having completed a full season with the team, Perez feels that will be of massive benefit to him with a major rules overhaul on the way.
“Well, we already have a baseline that we can work from and improve that one so that makes a huge difference,” Perez said in an-end-of-season media call, as quoted by GPFans.
“I already know the people. I already know who to ask what and how to get the most out of every single individual around me. That’s a very different picture.”
2021 acted as a very steep learning curve for Perez as he was thrust into the World Championship title battle from Formula 1’s midfield and, unsurprisingly, he has learned a lot about himself and Red Bull during his first 12 months there.
“A lot to be honest,” Perez said when asked about the lessons learned.
“Red Bull really pushes you to the maximum. Not just the drivers, [but] the engineers, the mechanics, the team bosses.
“Everyone is flat-out working to deliver the perfect result, the perfect moment for everyone. It’s been a tremendous experience and it has brought me to another level as a driver.”
Perez is prepared for more challenges in the 2022 season, believing that the heavier cars will be more difficult to drive.
The minimum weight of the cars will be 43 kilograms heavier than they were in 2021, at 795kg. They had been planned for a 775kg minimum, but an extra 20 kilos were added recently by the FIA.