Red Bull‘s Sergio Perez claimed to be a real contender for the Formula One championship after defeating his teammate Max Verstappen in Azerbaijan on Sunday. With the season being the longest ever at a record 23 races, the pair has now won two each and are way ahead of the competition. Perez is currently only six points behind double world champion Verstappen, having come fifth in Australia due to problems in qualifying. In an interview with Sky Sports TV, Perez expressed his confidence, saying “there is everything to believe that we can do well this year.”
Despite being the winner in Saudi Arabia and finishing second in the Bahrain season opener, Perez‘s victory in Baku was aided by the safety car. However, he made the most of the opportunity and became the first driver to win there twice. He also won the first sprint race of the season on Saturday in Baku. Perez is striving to become the world champion, and he said, “I am fighting for it, but I also know it’s a long road ahead.”
Perez has been in the sport for a while and knows that talking does not win races; delivering results does. He further added, “there is so much you can talk outside the car, it’s important to deliver on the track, and I think without the issues we had in qualifying in Melbourne, we should be leading the championship.” Although Verstappen is ahead with 37 race wins, Perez believes he can catch him and contends that Red Bull would have Perez as the championship leader if not for his Melbourne woes.
Perez‘s win was not his first triumph, as he’s won six Formula One events in total, with all but one taking place on street circuits, including Baku. Red Bull team boss Christian Horner praised Perez‘s performance, calling it “phenomenal” and his driving all weekend “outstanding.”
With the season still in its early stages, it is still anyone’s game, and Perez has just shown that he has the ability to compete with his teammate and win races. As the season progresses, fans and pundits will be keeping a close eye on both Verstappen and Perez as they continue to battle it out on the track.