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Sergio Perez

Perez defiant after 'risky' Leclerc move that ended Mexican GP

Sergio Perez suffered a heartbreak on home turf as he retired from the Mexican Grand Prix after making contact with Charles Leclerc on the opening lap. However, the Red Bull driver believes he was right to risk making the overtake stick.

Perez Leclerc Verstappen Mexico
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To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

Sergio Perez has defended his overtake attempt on Charles Leclerc at the Mexico City Grand Prix despite it resulting in a heartbreaking home race retirement.

Perez started the race from fifth on the grid but benefitted from slipstream on the run to the first corner.

The Red Bull driver pulled alongside Leclerc and team-mate Max Verstappen but collided with the former and sustained terminal damage.

Perez was been the centre of attention throughout the race weekend and the attending fans were left dejected over his early retirement.

However, Perez believes that it would have been a disservice to the crowd if he hadn't attempted to make a move for the lead on the first lap.

'Saddest race of my career'

"To be honest, I feel that I would have let them [the fans] down more if I didn't go for it," Perez told media including RacingNews365.

"So I went for it. I decided to take a risk. I knew it was going to be very risky and I ended up paying the price.

"Risk vs reward, it was a pretty high risk to take. But it was worth taking.

When asked if he would take the same risk again, Perez asserted: "Yes, I would."

With his non-finish, Perez is now in danger of losing second place in the Drivers' Championship with Lewis Hamilton lurking 20 points behind after a run to second.

Amid a difficult season, Perez admits that his home race retirement was the saddest race of his career.

"I've had some really sad moments in my career but certainly this race is the saddest one because of the end result," he said.

"But at the end of the day this is just racing. I go home very sad but I also go home very proud of my team and myself.

"We gave it all. I knew that a podium was not enough for me. I really wanted to go for the win. I saw the gap and I went for it."

Was Sergio Perez right to go for the move into Turn 1? Let us know in the comments and by voting in the poll below!

F1 2023 Mexican Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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