Sergio Perez wants answers on how Max Verstappen ended up being much “stronger” than him at the Miami Grand Prix and wants an investigation into the matter at Red Bull. It’s been a close battle all year between Perez and Verstappen so far.
The Red Bull team-mates headed into Miami with just a few points separating them at the top of the championship having won two races apiece. But Perez struggled to match Verstappen throughout the entire weekend in Miami, even after benefitting from Charles Leclerc’s crash in qualifying.
Verstappen had to make do with ninth on the grid for Sunday’s race while Perez started on pole. Despite that huge advantage from the start, Perez was unable to build a lead over Verstappen.
The Dutchman made light work of closing the gap and eventually took control of the race after both drivers pitted. It ended up being a comfortable victory for Verstappen in a race Perez should have been able to dominate.
And the Mexican has been left with several questions he wants to ask Red Bull before the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. “All in all, Verstappen was stronger than me this Sunday. We have to investigate why that was the case and during the race weekend in Imola we have to get back to our normal level,” Perez said.
“The performance that Verstappen showed was unattainable for me. We need to understand why that was. The tyre story didn’t help, but overall he was the better driver.
“I’ve been stronger on other weekends but this Sunday Max was the better one. He did a good job, but we need to understand what went wrong on our end.”
The Red Bull drivers were on different strategies for the race with Perez starting on the medium compound and Verstappen the hards. But Christian Horner feels Verstappen still would have come out on top if his drivers were on the same strategy.
“I think if he’d been on the other strategy as well the performance would have been very similar today,” he said. “I think he was obviously frustrated with himself after quali, that he made a mistake, and then obviously didn’t get the chance to rectify that.
“And I think he was confident coming into the race today, and just wanted to do something slightly different.”