Sergio Perez has admitted that he is surprised by Force India’s current pace given the lack of updates on its car, the VJM08, compared to the rest of the Formula 1 field.
Force India was only able to debut its new car towards the end of pre-season testing and is yet to bring any major upgrades for the car, whilst the majority of other teams have been using an updated package since the Spanish Grand Prix in May.
Despite falling behind in the development race, the team has still managed to keep on pace with many of its rivals. Perez crossed the line in seventh place in Monaco two weeks ago for his best result of the season so far.
Speaking to NBCSN on Thursday, Perez admitted that he was surprised by the team’s ability to keep up with its rivals in light of the lack of changes to the car.
“Very very surprised,” Perez said. “When we compare the pace of our car this year to last year, we are about one second slower than last year’s car.
“To be able to have scored so many points and be so close to Sauber, to Lotus, I think it’s pretty good effort from everyone in the team. We have big hopes when the upgrade comes.
“I’m driving the best of my career, and I want to keep doing that for the rest of the year.”
However, Perez refused to get ahead of himself when asked about Force India’s chances once the upgrades do arrive at the British Grand Prix in July.
“That would be a big ask,” he said when asked about possibly challenging for a podium finish with the updated car. “But definitely I think there should be the hope to move forwards.
“Every single time we made it into the points, we didn’t have the pace to do it. I really want to have the pace to do normal strategies and beat people by pace, that would be a really good thing for the team and definitely be consistent in the points and improve our constructors’ position.”