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F1 | Azerbaijan GP | Perez: Red Bull “were not perfect” as he urges for improvements despite 1-2 in Baku

Perez was left frustrated by a lack of clearer communication between him and Red Bull’s pit wall during the grand prix, and by a lack of race pace. Despite that, the result gets him to runner up spot in the drivers’ championship and leaves Red Bull 80 points clear of Ferrari in the constructors’.

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F1 | Azerbaijan GP | Perez: Red Bull “were not perfect” as he urges for improvements despite 1-2 in Baku
Fuente imagen: Oracle Red Bull Racing

After the incredible highs of his Monaco win and an excellent qualifying performance on Saturday in Baku, Sergio Perez looked like the stronger of the two Red Bull drivers again on the opening laps, but after a Virtual Safety Car for Sainz's retirement, he couldn’t fend off his charging team-mate Max Verstappen on Sunday, as he trailed the Dutchman home by over 20 seconds on the chequered flag.

With the 1-2 finish and a fastest lap for Perez, Red Bull will leave Azerbaijan having scored the maximum possible amount of points – 44 – and with a lead of 80 points over direct rivals Ferrari in the constructors’ championship. Despite all of that, Sergio Perez was clearly disappointed with how his and the team’s race panned out in Baku, highlighting some issues that he thinks would cost them if Ferrari were in the race:

“First of all, the communication wasn’t tidy today with the team. We should have boxed under the Virtual Safety Car (in the early laps) and our race would have looked very different.

“But then my pace dropped a lot after the Virtual Safety Car, I don’t know what really happened – probably the rear tyres cooled down a bit – that did compromise a bit the race and Max (Verstappen) was a lot stronger there.

“Then we had a few bad (pit) stops, then I was told to keep a certain pace once the Ferraris retired, so it was just a matter of bringing it back home.”

Perez highlighted the importance of learning from the mistakes that were made in the race, as he said the team “were not perfect” and didn’t deliver the “maximum result” possible, given all the issues that transpired during the 51 laps around the Baku City Circuit, and is hopeful they can be sorted in time for the next race in Canada:

“On days like today, we have to learn from them, because we were not perfect and we didn’t deliver the maximum result we possibly can. That’s something we need to understand as a team and move on. Hopefully in Canada we are able to improve our race pace a lot.”

The topic of team orders seems to be always present at Red Bull recently, with the varying strategies of Perez and Verstappen in Spain and several team orders causing controversy. This time around in Baku, Perez received a radio call from his team in which he was asked to have “no fighting” with his team-mate.

Explaining this after the race, Perez said Verstappen was simply faster and that he has “no issues with that”, and praised a “great team result”:

“I think it was clear Max was a bit faster today, so he deserved the win. I have no issues with that, it was as simple as that.

“I think it was the right call made by the team, because at the time Max was a bit further ahead, and it was just a good team result. In this place, anything can happen. Today we managed to get a 1-2, so that’s a great team result.”

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