Perez: Hulkenberg was my strongest team-mate in F1

Date published: October 26 2016

Sergio Perez said that Nico Hulkenberg is the strongest team-mate he has ever had in Formula 1, with German heading off to Renault next year as he sees out the remaining three races with Force India.

Since Perez’s debut year in 2011, the Mexican has had three team-mates. Kamui Kobayashi partnered him at Sauber before he moved to McLaren, where he paired with Jenson Button.

The 26-year-old praised his latest team-mate Hulkenberg, explaining that it was positive for the Silverstone-based outfit that they pushed each other to do better.

“I think the relationship between myself and Nico was good,” Perez said.

“I think our level was really closely matched every single practice.

“That means a lot to the team because we push the team forward and that shows in the benefit of the team to have two team-mates that are so closely matched together.

“I always knew that if I didn’t get the perfect lap in qualifying he would beat me and vice versa.

“And also in the race, and race after race, so that just helps the team because through our seasons [together] we had bad cars and good cars but it was always important to make sure we took the maximum out of each car.

“I think definitely Nico was the strongest team mate I had in Formula 1.”

It is still not confirmed who will partner Perez at Force India next year, but names like Esteban Ocon , Pierre Gasly and Pascal Wehrlein have been thrown around.