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F1 | Mexico GP | Perez says his late battle with Lewis Hamilton was “hopeless”, but celebrates his third consecutive podium and first on home soil

Home hero Sergio Perez couldn’t quite get past the Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton to delight even more his passionate supporters, but P3 on Sunday’s Mexico City GP means he’s now the first Mexican to stand on the podium in home soil.

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F1 | Mexico GP | Perez says his late battle with Lewis Hamilton was “hopeless”, but celebrates his third consecutive podium and first on home soil
Fuente imagen: Twitter @RedBullRacing

Red Bull enjoyed quite a productive day in Mexico City, with a double podium and a win for Max Verstappen boosting their chances of glory in both the Drivers’ and Constructors’ championships, with only four races still to come in 2021. But the real sensation of the weekend was the local man, Sergio Perez. An estimated crowd of around 140,000 people at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez cheered the Guadalajara-born Mexican to his first podium in home territory, behind only title protagonists Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton.


'Checo' enjoyed a strong race, following Hamilton closely in the first part of the race, before going long on his tyres and ensuring he would have a tyre advantage on the Mercedes for the latter stages of the grand prix. The Mexican clawed back almost 9 seconds on the Mercedes and was within striking distance on the final laps. Ultimately, he couldn’t get past the reigning champion and had to settle for the final step on the podium. After the race, Perez reflected on what was a special day for him and his team at Mexico City.

"I obviously wanted more. It’s a great result, very happy to be on the podium at my home country.

"It’s an unbelievable day. I wanted to get the 1-2 for the team, it was pretty close – I gave my full heart," he said.

After somewhat of a performance blip on Saturday, Red Bull came back strong on Sunday and looked set for a big result against main rivals Mercedes. Perez got tantalisingly close to Hamilton on the final couple of laps, but, as he explains, it was a "hopeless" battle from his side, as the turbulence coming from the back of Hamilton’s car impeded him from getting close enough for a real attack on the Briton:

"I was giving my best, but it was hopeless. I didn’t have a single chance, if I had a small chance, I would’ve gone for it," the Mexican stated.

But Perez takes comfort from the impressive pace of his RB16B on race day at Mexico, and from the immense support the partisan crowd showed to him throughout all 3 days of action at the circuit:

"I think today we were the fastest, and it’s going to swing around weekend by weekend, so we just need to keep our heads down and keep pushing hard.

"The Mexicans were so happy today, and it’s definitely a very nice result.

"I could actually hear them [the crowd], when I was going through [the stadium section], it was pretty enjoyable. It was full of support.", he concluded.

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