In May, it was confirmed that Sergio Perez signed a new two-year deal with Red Bull Racing to take him through to the end of the 2024 season. Perez had spent nine years in midfield teams before joining the Milton-Keynes based squad for 2021.
Speaking about his career in Hungary following Sebastian Vettel’s announcement that he would be retiring from F1 at the end of 2022, the Mexican said “yeah, definitely” in response to a question when asked if his time in the sport has been prolonged because he’s now in a front-running team.
“I think if I was in a project that wouldn’t inspire, maybe the price to pay to be an F1 driver was not worth it anymore. Luckily I’m in a different situation.”
Like Vettel, Perez is a father of three children. He admits spending so much time away from them is hard because of how demanding and time-consuming Formula One is.
“Every time you go away you think about every goodbye you say to your kids, it’s hard because you’re always away from them," he said.
“It’s a sport that takes everything out of you and out of your personal life. You basically don’t have much of a personal life because you are always training, looking at what you are eating, and it’s the same when you are with your kids.
“I think when you have a project that motivates you and you want to be here, you know what’s the price. Sometimes you are not willing to pay it anymore – and that’s when you better say goodbye to the sport."
Perez also paid tribute to the departing Vettel, hailing the German as a legend of Formula One. The 32-year-old also feels proud of his colleague.
“In a way, I feel very proud of Seb and what he has achieved,” he stated. “He’s a great legend of the sport, a great guy. He’s always been very fair, very vocal. He’s been very successful. He has a beautiful family. [He has accomplished] everything what you would hope for a colleague to achieve.”
Incredible to think that after so many years racing together #SebastianVettel will not longer be on the grid with us.— Sergio Pérez (@SChecoPerez) July 28, 2022
Happy retirement! I’m very proud of you and proud of everything you achieved in the sport.
It’s now time to enjoy family and life!#FroheWeihnachten 😬 pic.twitter.com/SiCe8HVyvp