Having received criticism from many sections of the F1 paddock for his aggressive driving style, Sergio Perez has hit back at his doubters, claiming that he is in Formula One “to fight”, as proven in Monaco two races ago.
The Mexican driver was particularly opportunistic when trying to overtake on the entry to the Nouvelle chicane, passing Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso during the race. However, when attempting to pass Kimi Raikkonen, the two drivers made contact, causing Raikkonen to quip that somebody should ‘punch Perez in the face’. Despite this criticism, Perez believes that he is simply doing what he set out to do.
“I feel frustrated. I feel that my performance with McLaren has been good. I have total support from my team. As a driver this is very important, to count on your team’s support,” Perez explained in an interview.
“About the criticism, I believe everyone has their own view. I’m not here to be liked by everyone. I’m in Formula One to fight for my team and if that causes criticism I don’t care.”
These comments provide a wonderful insight into Perez’s attitude towards the rest of the season. McLaren have failed to impress so far this year thanks to the poor pace of the MP4-28, stunting the progress of Perez and teammate Jenson Button, yet Perez’s refusal to lie down and accept the meager points on offer underlines his credentials as being a star for the future.
The team will be hoping to bounce back at its home race, the British Grand Prix, in two weeks’ time.