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Sergio Perez

Perez refuses to deploy title 'mind games' on Verstappen

The Mexican is set to fight his World Champion teammate for the 2023 title given Red Bull's pace advantage.

Sergio Perez says he will not deploy Formula 1 title 'mind games' on teammate Max Verstappen as they battle for the 2023 crown.

The Mexican is firmly in the hunt for a maiden world title against the reigning double champion, with the Red Bull RB19 firmly ahead of rival cars, meaning it it unlikely Mercedes, Ferrari or Aston Martin will be able to get into regular contention for wins.

Perez is just six points behind Verstappen in the standings, meaning that if he wins in Miami this weekend, he will top the Drivers' standings for the first time in his career.

However, the 33-year-old says he is not into playing any mind games with Verstappen - preferring a straight fight out on track.

Perez on Verstappen battle

"No, I'm not really into it," he told media, including RacingNews365.com, when asked if he had looked into any psychological warfare against Verstappen.

"I'm more focused on making sure I've learnt from what I've done wrong in Baku, what I am able to improve, and work on it with my engineers.

"The best way that I can win the championship is just by having that evolution for the season.

"As long as that respect is there, I don't see any reason why it would be any different between us.

"Because we've both won and we are very hungry - but at the end of the day, we have a lot of respect for our team."

			© XPBimages
	© XPBimages

Easy to deploy team orders

Perez also praised Red Bull for not deploying team orders, especially in Azerbaijan last time out with both he and Verstappen were racing flat out.

"I believe that the team will give me as much support as they do with Max - and in what they've been doing pretty much since the start of the season.

"We have to appreciate Red Bull because it would be easy to implement team orders on Lap 20 to look after the cars and make sure we are reliable.

"But in Jeddah and Baku, we pushed throughout the race - I mean we hit the wall a few times, and that was only because we were on the limit so much, and it went right.

'But I mean, there could easily have been damage, and have a problem."

Also interesting:

Balve Bains is joined by RacingNews365.com Editorial Director Dieter Rencken and Asia Correspondent Michael Butterworth to dissect the key talking points from the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

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