Sergio Perez believes that fifth place in the Formula 1 constructors’ championship is now the minimum target for Force India following its record 2015 campaign.
Perez led Force India to its highest ever finish in the teams’ standings this year, scoring just the third podium finish its history at the Russian Grand Prix.
Given the financial difficulties faced at the beginning of the year, Force India managed to rally throughout the season and finish as arguably the third-fastest team in Abu Dhabi.
Perez called on the team to push on following its successful campaign, saying that expectations would be high for 2016.
“The important thing is to continue growing as a team,” Perez said. “We showed we can do it this year and I hope it is the sign of things to come in the future.
“The expectations are really high after what we did in 2015: repeating our fifth place must be our minimum target, even though it will not be easy, and we have to aim higher.
“It’s going to take a big effort to do that, and it’s important to be competitive right from the start of the season, in those first rounds where everything can happen.
“There will be a lot of teams out there trying to beat us but I know we can see them off and put a challenge to the ones ahead of us.”
Perez highlighted two stand-out moments in his 2015 season: the podium in Russia and racing in front of his home crowd for the first time at the Mexican Grand Prix in November.
“There are so many memories that will stay with me after 2015,” Perez said. “Surely, the podium in Russia is a big moment, but nothing beats racing in front of my home crowd in Mexico.
“What I felt during the drivers’ parade in Mexico City cannot be put down in words – waving at the fans and feeling all their support was something unlike anything I have ever experienced in my career.”
Adam Cianciarulo (450) and Dylan Ferrandis (250) swept both motos of their divisions Saturday in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship event at Spring Creek MX Park in Millville, Minnesota, significantly impacting the points standings.
“Man, what a dream come true,” Cianciarulo said. “I really wanted to go 1-1 last round at RedBud and had that silly mistake. Today, we got the job done and made it happen. Two consecutive victories in the 450 Class just feels really good. I just want to keep the ball rolling.”
With three rounds remaining, Cianciarulo is ranked second in the standings at a 15-point deficit to Zach Osborne, who won three of the first five rounds.
In the 250 standings, Dylan Ferrandis jumped ahead of Jeremy Martin (who won three consecutive events earlier in the season) by three points (257-254).
Ferrandis beat third-ranked RJ Hampshire in the first moto and nipping Martin by 0.4 seconds in the second.
“That was a difficult race in the second moto and the pressure was on,” Ferrandis said. “It was really good for me to have that battle and come out on top in the second moto. The championship is really close and I think that we were able to put on a good show for everyone today. Jeremy [Martin] and I have a good relationship I think and we congratulated each other and talked about the battle after the race.”
NEXT: The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship will hold its seventh round Sept. 26 with the Geico Motorcycle WW Ranch National at Jacksonville, Florida.
Thor Spring Creek National (Spring Creek MX Park, Millville, Minnesota)
450 Class Overall Results (Moto Finish)
Adam Cianciarulo, Port Orange, Fla., Kawasaki (1-1)
Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., KTM (2-2)
Justin Barcia, Monroe, N.Y., Yamaha (5-4)
Chase Sexton, La Moille, Ill., Honda (8-3)
Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki (6-5)
Marvin Musquin, France, KTM (3-10)
Christian Craig, El Cajon, Calif., Honda (7-6)
Joey Savatgy, , Suzuki (9-7)
Max Anstie, United Kingdom, Suzuki (10-8)
Zach Osborne, Abingdon, Va., Husqvarna (4-16)
450 Class Championship Standings
Zach Osborne, Abingdon, Va., Husqvarna – 235
Adam Cianciarulo, Port Orange, Fla., Kawasaki – 220
Marvin Musquin, France, KTM – 215
Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki – 196
Justin Barcia, Monroe, N.Y., Yamaha – 194
Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., KTM – 190
Chase Sexton, La Moille, Ill., Honda – 173
Christian Craig, El Cajon, Calif., Honda – 141
Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Yamaha – 134
Joey Savatgy, Tallahassee, Fla., Suzuki – 122
250 Class Overall Results (Moto Finish)
Dylan Ferrandis, France, Yamaha (1-1)
Jeremy Martin, Millville, Minn., Honda (5-2)
Alex Martin, Millville, Minn., Suzuki (4-4)
Jett Lawrence, Australia, Honda (3-6)
Justin Cooper, Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y., Yamaha (9-3)