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Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix 2024

Perez wary of threat posed by Red Bull's rivals in Monaco

Sergio Perez is wary of the threat posed by McLaren and Ferrari at the Monaco Grand Prix, with Red Bull yet to have delivered a substantial upgrade package this season.

Perez Monaco
To news overview © XPBimages

Sergio Perez believes McLaren and Ferrari will be difficult to beat at the Monaco Grand Prix, with the two teams having closed in on Red Bull in recent weeks.

The 34-year-old also feels racing around the streets of Monte Carlo provides an opportunity for some of the midfield to take the fight to the established elite - given the small margins at the infamous circuit.

After McLaren brought upgrades to the Miami Grand Prix and Ferrari followed suit in Imola, Perez's team-mate Max Verstappen was run much closer in those two events, including being pipped to the race win in Florida by Lando Norris.

In the subsequent round, he only just took pole position, and had to withstand a late charge, again by Norris, to hold on to victory. With qualifying critical to success in Monaco, Perez is refusing to minimise the threat posed by the Woking and Maranello-based teams.

"I think they will be in the mix, definitely," the Mexican driver said of McLaren and Ferrari to media including RacingNews365. "They will be very hard to beat, actually."

"But, at the same time, I do expect the other teams to be a surprise, because given how small the margins are in qualifying here, I'm sure some of the midfield teams will be able to put a great lap together and be in the mix as well."

'They seem to be closing the gap'

Red Bull started the season in imperious form, taking three one-two finishes from the opening four rounds, but its pace has cooled since. 

In part, that is due to Perez taking just one third-place finish in the subsequent three rounds, with Charles Leclerc now ahead of him in the drivers' standings and Norris just six points behind.

That shift in fortunes is largely because of the strides made by its competitors, but Red Bull has also not yet issues a comprehensive package update - something both McLaren and Ferrari has.

"They're closing up a lot, and we have to make sure that we do the same," Perez admitted. "We got a good upgrade, we haven't got a massive upgrade in the car just yet, so they seem to be closing the gap."

However, the six-time grand prix winner is keen on the prospect of a closer fight at the front of the field, contending that more competition for Red Bull is something people want.

"It's great, also," he added. "I think we all want to see how McLaren and Ferrari perform with a car that that is capable of winning races. I think it's something that would be fascinating to watch."

Also interesting:

In the latest episode of the RacingNews365.com podcast, Ian Parkes, Samuel Coop and Nick Golding look back at this weekend's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, where Max Verstappen and Lando Norris went head-to-head for the victory around the famous Imola Circuit as McLaren continue to pile the pressure on Red Bull!

Rather watch than listen to the podcast? Click here.

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