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Christian Horner

Horner welcomes back 'the Perez we know' after Brazil performance

Sergio Perez rose from ninth to fourth at the Brazilian Grand Prix and received praise from Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner after he narrowly missed out on a podium in Sao Paulo.

Perez Russell Brazil
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To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool

Red Bull Team Principal Horner has welcomed back the 'Sergio Perez we know' after a strong performance at the São Paulo Grand Prix.

Perez's speed in Friday's qualifying was masked by a freak storm and yellow flags thrown for McLaren driver Oscar Piastri's off in Q3, leaving him ninth on the grid.

The Mexican driver made several overtakes during the race and was engaged in a battle with Fernando Alonso in the final laps for third place.

Alonso won out over the Perez but the duo were separated by just five-hundredths of a second at the chequered flag.

“I thought Checo drove brilliantly well,” Horner told media including RacingNews365.com.

“He had a little bit of a wobble at Turn 2 which allowed Fernando, who was very quick on the straights, to have a go at him. He did his best to hang on to it.”

Perez's result on a day that Mercedes struggled for form also helped his quest for second place in the Drivers' Championship.

“I think [it's great] for Checo to outscore Lewis [Hamilton] by 12 points this weekend,” added Horner.

“It's been a very strong weekend for him - third on Saturday, fourth from ninth on the grid [on Sunday] with the yellow flags he got in quali, it's very good points for him.”

A boost in confidence

Much of Perez's campaign has been marred by continuous speculation over his F1 future amid a series of underwhelming performances.

The 34-year-old crashed out on the opening lap last time out at the Mexican Grand Prix to the disappointment of the attending local fans.

Horner has backed Perez to enjoy a strong final two races of the year with a strong weekend in São Paulo secured in his pocket.

“I think it's important for his confidence,” he said. “I think that was the Checo that we know he's capable of.

“That will give him just the boost he needs going into another street track [where] he's always performed well at, in Vegas. And then Abu Dhabi one week after.”

F1 2023 Brazilian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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