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Sergio Perez Q&A: We are racers, not Sunday drivers 07 Jun 2013

Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Practice, Montreal, Canada, Friday, 7 June 2013 Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren MP4-28.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Practice, Montreal, Canada, Friday, 7 June 2013 Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren MP4-28.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Practice, Montreal, Canada, Friday, 7 June 2013 Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren MP4-28.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Practice, Montreal, Canada, Friday, 7 June 2013 Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Practice, Montreal, Canada, Friday, 7 June 2013

It seems Sergio Perez just can’t win. First he is told by his new team boss that he is not being aggressive enough, and then when he puts in some strong passing moves in Monaco his fellow drivers complain he is being too aggressive. Will the criticism change Perez’s approach in Montreal this weekend? Definitely not says the McLaren star…

Q: Checo, McLaren have a very good record here in Montreal. Do you think that this will be of any help to you and Jenson Button on Sunday?
Sergio Perez:
I hope it will. But to be honest you can never compare the past with the present, can you? We have to see that we get our game together and not be staring at past glories, because that doesn’t help. Today we are lacking a bit in performance, but Montreal has shown time and again that with changing conditions anything can happen. Haven’t we even seen that today? So it will be up to us to make the best out of what we will be confronted with tomorrow afternoon and on Sunday.

Q: There was a bit of bad blood between you and Kimi Raikkonen in Monaco. After two weeks digesting it, how does it feel?
SP:
It’s over and I don’t want to speak about it any longer. One thing I can say is in the last couple of years people were overtaking there and I did nothing wrong. I was trying to overtake and Kimi shut the door. I tried my best to avoid contact but I touched his rear tyre and subsequently had to retire from the race. End of story. It’ the nature of racing to overtake and I will always do the same again. We are racers and not Sunday drivers.

Q: So the approach - being aggressive in the race - will not change here?
SP:
Exactly. You only have to change if you do something stupid - and in Monaco there was nothing stupid about my move. I just wanted to overtake and the driver in front of me shut the door, so there was nothing I could have done to avoid him. I will go into this race here as aggressive as always - but also being fair.

Q: On the team radio Kimi was a bit hot tempered - a very unusual condition for the ‘Iceman’ - saying that you might need to cool down and that a slap in the face would help you with that. How do you cope with such a comment?
SP:
It shows that we are all human and that sometimes emotions take over. True, in the race both of us were pretty angry and after the race he attacked me in the media. But hey, that is pretty normal - even for an ‘Iceman’. Nevertheless, I respect him a lot.

Q: Aside from Kimi’s comments, other drivers have also criticized you because of your ‘aggressive’ driving style. Do you think this is justified?
SP:
Everybody is allowed to have his opinion. This is down to personal preferences. But as Monaco right now is the catalyst for this discussion, I can only repeat what I just said before: I have done nothing wrong. I tried to overtake at one of the few spots where overtaking is possible in Monaco and my opponent has shut the door. So I am not really bothered by any of these comments.

Q: Your team principal Martin Whitmarsh had called on you to drive a bit more aggressively. Was Monaco the result of that request?
SP:
No, not really. All I am doing is looking forward to having a competitive car that will give me the chance to show my full talent. I know that I have the full support of my team - and once we have overcome some glitches let’s see that we win some races this year. I find it somewhat surprising that after all these years of desperately demanding more overtaking, that if you do it you are a culprit. Isn’t that an anachronism and probably personally motivated?

Q: So Monaco is history. How about a good Montreal finish? Weren’t we supposed to be in the Canadian summer…
SP:
…and I thought we are in Silverstone! (laughs) It is my second outing here as in 2011 I could not race because of my Monaco crash. I have pretty good memories from last year. I made it to the podium and I certainly want to repeat that. I know it will be tricky, but there is nothing for free in F1 so it will be a hard working Sunday afternoon.

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