2021 has been a year of changes for Sergio Perez, getting used to his new car and team after being 7 years in his past one (Force India - Racing Point).
This first half of the season has had its ups and downs for Perez, winning his first race with the team at Azerbaijan but struggling on Saturdays in the qualifying and consequently, having to climb through the grid on Sundays during the race.
When he was asked by Motorsport.com about the pressure he has with a one year contract, he responded:
"It doesn't make any difference to me."
"Even if we are on longer contracts, we are still racing drivers and want to deliver weekend after weekend.”
“To be honest, it is not something I think about at all. The only thing I think about is the next race weekend. The same goes the other way around. I'm not thinking 'oh, I have a contract for next year now, so I can be more relaxed'. No, not at all.”
"If I would be thinking that way, I would never be here anyway."
The Mexican driver said Christian Horner (Red Bull's Team Principal) and Helmut Marko (Red Bull's advisor) talked with him about his near future.
"A couple of races before that [contract announcement] Helmut and Christian spoke to me."
"They said that I shouldn't be looking anywhere else, because they are happy with me and want to continue.”
"For me it was the same really, so it was pretty clear. We have developed a good amount of trust during this short period of time, which is important.”
"If Christian and Helmut tell me something, I fully believe them and as a result of that I wasn't worried of anything else."
Head to head against his teammate (Max Verstappen), Perez has only qualified one time ahead of him (Imola).
"I have to make a good step in the qualifying sessions."
"The race pace is there, but we have to do a good step in qualifying.”
"The positive side is, if there is a delta to Max in qualifying, it tends to disappear in the race. We get a lot closer then, but I just have to close the gap on Saturdays as well, so I can be there from the beginning."