Sergio Perez’s first win in a Red Bull at the Azerbaijan GP last Sunday left Christian Horner quite satisfied.
“We knew he was good around here but we didn't know he was that good. He’s been quick all weekend, he’s been bang on the pace. The only one lap he made a mistake was Q3, run one. And his race was phenomenal,” he commented.
The Mexican started 6th on the grid and climbed his way up to 3rd place rather quickly. His race pace was so good that he would have taken P1 from his teammate Max Verstappen had it not been for the time lost during his pit stop due to being slightly out of position in his box.
Despite that he still managed to come back on track ahead of Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes and take 2nd place.
“Had he not been long at the first stop, he would have been right on top of Max for the overcut at that point as well such was his pace in clean air,” said Horner. “So, phenomenal for him.”
He held that position without much trouble and took the lead at the restart after Verstappen was forced out by a tyre failure.
“The way he was defending to Lewis and controlling it was a class act. So to see him get that victory, I think will be great for his confidence, it puts him up to third in the drivers’ championship now. So I think he’s ahead of expectations.”
Perez is the first among the Dutchman’s teammates to get a win ever since Daniel Ricciardo’s departure.
“It’s great to have both cars up there,” stated the Team Principal.
“I think that is an added string to our bow, on the day that you lose your lead, that Checo is right there to deliver the win. That’s exactly what we’ve been looking for.”
But does it mean Perez will be keeping his seat at RedBull beyond the current season?
“I’m really happy with the job that Checo is doing,” he said. “We’re only on race six out of 23, we’ve got plenty of time, he is enjoying being in the team, he’s doing a great job and he just needs to keep doing what he’s doing.”