Red Bull ‘miles off’ around Silverstone says Perez – while Verstappen says it’s ‘not a surprise’ to see Ferrari lead FP2
Sergio Perez didn’t cut the happiest figure after Friday practice at Silverstone with the Mexican driver explaining that he struggled on his way to P7 in FP2. Max Verstappen, however, said he wasn’t too worried about Ferrari having set the leading pace.
Friday began with a rainy FP1 session, Perez and Verstappen clocking up just three laps apiece as only 10 drivers set a time in opening practice. FP2, however, was full of action, with Carlos Sainz topping the times and Lewis Hamilton finishing P2 by a tenth of a second. Perez was eight-tenths off Sainz, however.
“It wasn’t a great session today,” began Perez. “I think from our preparation that we had and simulator, the car is miles off – so we assume that there’s something going on that we need to understand. And yes, it was a very, very short long run there at the end. So yes, not a great start. We are a bit on the back foot, so we just have to understand what’s going on with it.
“It’s going to be pretty difficult [to recover] but we’ve done it before and I think as long as we are able to get things in the right place, you need the confidence around these fast corners, so as long as I’m able to get back my confidence, I think things should be alright.”
Asked if he had an idea where he was losing pace, Perez replied: “We do have, I think, there are some [suspicions] on the aerodynamic side but yes, obviously, we cannot go too much into detail.”
Verstappen – a nominal P20 in that wet FP1 session and fourth in FP2, ahead of Charles Leclerc – explained that the lack of FP1 running may have been to blame for a slightly compromised second practice session.
“Yes, I mean it’s always a bit tricky after not driving in FP1 for everyone, and then FP2 becomes of course a lot more of a bit of guessing, let’s say it like that, where normally in FP1 you just build it up.
“It was maybe not ideal but also not a big issue, so I think we know what we have to work on and that’s what we’ll try to do overnight, but again tomorrow probably it’s raining so we have again different type of conditions. But it was okay.
“[We did a] few laps with the softest compound, which I think is alright. It’s just around here with all the high-speed corners, the tyres in general, they wear a lot. It was always going to be, I think, quite tricky to manage the tyres.”
As for Ferrari’s pace, Sainz having set the fastest time on Friday, Verstappen wasn’t concerned, saying: “Every weekend they are fast, so it’s not a surprise... [But] it was not bad, we’re still in there, there’s still a few things we need to look at, tyres as well – so it’s alright!”
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