David Coulthard highlights Sergio Perez's error in Abu Dhabi that would have irked Red Bull
David Coulthard feels that Sergio Perez's error while trying to overtake Lando Norris, which resulted in a 5-second penalty, would have irked Red Bull. According to the former driver and one of the first drivers of the Austrian team, Perez's mistake allowed Mercedes to secure P2 in the championship and that's something that would not have gone down well at the Horner-led squad.
At the last race of the season in Abu Dhabi, Sergio Perez was making his way through the field after a botched qualifying session. In one of the moves he made, the Mexican lunged down the inside of Lando Norris' McLaren and as a result ended up making contact. For the incident, Perez was given a 5-second penalty which was added to his time at the end of the race.
In the end, it was this penalty that meant Mercedes was able to secure P2 in the championship. Sergio Perez could not establish a 5-second advantage despite overtaking George Russell in the later stages of the race.
Talking to Channel 4, David Coulthard felt that Red Bull might be a bit irked at its driver. Analyzing the incident, the former race winner said:
“It was clumsy. Checo had the move done, on board, he’s not gone super aggressive on the braking. Watch the steering, he turns in, turns away, and that then just creates that little bit of push. Honestly, I can’t answer that because it doesn’t make any sense. That was clumsy and definitely his fault.”
Coulthard added that the 5-second penalty for Sergio Perez would irk Red Bull because it gave P2 in the championship to Mercedes, the Austrian team's biggest rival in the future. He said:
“That five-second penalty I guess will irk Red Bull because Mercedes then get second in the Constructors’ and that’s probably their biggest rival in terms of future competition.”
Sergio Perez needs to change his view in the battle with Max Verstappen
Talking about Sergio Perez, Coulthard felt that the Mexican needs to change his view and approach on how he tackles the Max Verstappen challenge. Suggesting that the Mexican needs to come to terms with the fact that his teammate is just too good, Coulthard said:
“I think now they [his management] probably need to take a slightly different view, which is he is the best partner to a Max, a phenomenon, and then you could knuckle down in the way that Eddie Irvine did with [Michael] Schumacher or Gerhard Berger did with Ayrton Senna, two examples of drivers who just accepted they weren’t as quick as their team-mates."
Sergio Perez's contract ends at the end of the 2024 F1 season and the driver will be hoping to put together a stronger performance next time around to secure his seat.