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Sergio Perez Announced At Force India; Sutil and Di Resta Out
Posted By:   |  12 Dec 2013   |  4:48 pm GMT  |  169 comments

Sergio Perez’s Formula One future has been secured today after being announced as Nico Hulkenberg’s team mate at Force India, at an unveiling in London’s Mexican Consul.

This confirms that both Adrian Sutil and Paul Di Resta will need to look elsewhere for a 2014 seat.

But for Perez, whose future had been thrown in to the air following his surprise departure from McLaren, he had options with Force India, Sauber and even a switch to Indycar as a possibility for future plans. However, he will now join Force India to create a strong driver line-up.

Force India will go into the new season with two new drivers, although Hulkenberg is known to them from his 2011 and 2012 seasons.

A difficult 2013 for Perez was compounded by a poor McLaren machine that gave him, nor Jenson Button, the chance to battle amongst the top teams. But he showed glimpses of why McLaren employed him and he may thrive, as he did with Sauber, in a team with less intense pressures.

“It’s great to announce my new team as Force India,” said Perez. “Coming here was always my first choice and I’m really happy everything has now been confirmed. I want to say thank you to Vijay and the whole team for giving me the opportunity.

“It’s all change for next season with the new regulations, but I already have a good feeling about 2014. My plan now is to visit the factory and get to know everyone in the team.”

Maintaining Perez in Formula One is also an important factor for the introduction of a Mexican Grand Prix. Seeing him leave Formula One along with Esteban Gutierrez, whose future is unknown, would have made a Mexican GP less desirable for its backers.

There is also the fact of the financial backing that Perez enjoys, namely Carlos Slim’s Telmex money. It is believed that a figure of around 15million euros is making its way to Silverstone, which will help with the team’s development as we enter a new era of Formula One.

Force India’s 2013 driver pairing will now be well in to looking elsewhere for a drive, with Adrian Sutil linked with Sauber.

But for Paul Di Resta it could be a long winter as he assesses his future in motorsport. A return to DTM is likely, but he still has a lot to offer in Formula One, so a reserve driver role is not off the cards – possibly at Mercedes.

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Tornillo Amarillo

RICCIARDO… he will have a good car, a fourthtuple fellow driver in the other seat, and…

– HULK & PEREZ in a competitive F.India

– GROSJEAN in a high performance…

– KIMI & ALONSO in a very good Ferrari…

– experience drivers like MALDONADO, SUTIL, and fast drivers like BOTTAS.

I think RICCIARDO and RED BULL could have a hard time there…

Only relief BUTTON is still there in McLaren…

Tornillo Amarillo

Di Resta…. he should have done what PEREZ did the last few races, but he didn’t.

I think Di Resta has more psic problems than HAMILTON… So no for reserve driver at Mercedes for me, sorry.


Be Interesting to See who come out on Top between Perez and Hulk, as I’m sure others have said, it will Possibly show if McLaren made the Right Choice for 2013.


I’m going to stick my neck out now and say Hulk, but I think both should do well.


Money talks, what’s new?


Was this perhaps not the plan from the beginning, James?

It was decidedly un-McLaren to be so near-apologetic about sacking Perez. They were determined not to damage his reputation. Whitmarsh’s comments that they were “assisting” him in finding a drive? Maybe it was a fait accomplis. Mac puts Sergio’s contract to Force India, and the teams divvy-up the Telmex pesos?

I wouldn’t mind seeing the two FI drivers spend a couple of years fighting it out for a seat at Ross Brawn’s McLaren/Honda.


makes sense from a business point of view. I dont think FI feel the drivers they are getting are a magnitude better than the one’s they have released. So all the insults to the drivers that have been dropped are low. sums up sports fans i suppose.

The real benefit is business deals that may come to pass in mexico and south america.

No doubt these are the sort of thing’s mclaren couldnt do as it didn’t suit the ‘image’ of the brand.


It’s strange that a lot of people are now talking about FI having one of the strongest driver pairings, yet when Perez was at McLaren they had one of the weakest. What changed?

I believe it’s a good line up for a midfield team and they should get some decent results next year. I think though, the difference between Hulk and Perez might be greater than that of Button and Perez.


Hulk is vastly superior to button


Er.. Button?

Also, they are not in a top team , opinions would be different

But I agree with general consensus, it will be a fun team to watch


Personally just glad the hulk found a reasonably competitive drive for next year. I think Perez will do a consistently good job too, but the hulk will have him covered. Carlos’s pesos should keep them competitive throughout the season,as cash flow will be more important than ever. Never rated Di Resta, or Sutil for that matter. Let’s hope the merc engine is up to the task…. and that crashdonado status away from them….


@ Sebee

Lol, yeah sure.


Mexican pay cheque prevailed over talents.

Sad day for F1 today.


Sorry, Kay, but you do not not what you are talking about.


Sorry again, I should have written “do not know” instead of “do not not”. My mistake.


Hi James,

Do you think that McLaren are starting the same downwards trend as Williams?


I would rather see them making a comeback. Mclaren have other sources of income from selling road cars and tech stuff to other teams. I think they will be fine. The only thing I feel is that Whitmarsh is not delivering.


One year does not make a Williams 😉

In the case of Williams, since they won their last championship their decline down the order has more constant and gradual.

It’s also been a little while between championships for McLaren, but until only this year they’ve managed stayed near the pointy end.

Hopefully 2013 was just a hiccup and they’ll be back in force in 2015, if not next year.

And if Ron Dennis gets his way watch out! 🙂


No, the new deal with Honda from 2015 onwards will inject huge funding and there will be a collective desire to be champions, as they were in lat 1980s

Tornillo Amarillo

PEREZ a Champion in 2015 with… some team!

Go PEREZ, Go Latino!

Now you have your seat, let dear Whitmarsh sleep at night!


Hi James, how is Honda and McLaren different to BMW and Williams?

What I have been intending to ask for a while is budget related, are Mercedes and Ferrari disadvantaged because they make their own engines? I’m curious how it is all paid for. I had thought that Red Bull develop their chassis, Renault develop and pay for the engine, and Infiniti also pay, while Mercedes and Ferrari have to pay to develop both engine and chassis. Am I missing something? It seems that Red Bull have a huge advantage, biggest budget, and free engines which are then paid for by another party.


What about Ron Dennis? Is he really returning to team principal role in near future?

Harrison Vrbanjac

Hello James,

Can’t you write article about Williams down spiral?

dimitar kadrinski

I always knew that, but it really is a good feel to see it from you James 🙂

In my view McLaren have a very healthy business. The highs they reached as an organisation can hardly see them abandon the F1 team. Not that Williams are bad in business, but no point to compare them. I even think they will outrun Ferrari in the future (as daft as it seems) the way their road car side is rolling now… Exciting times for that team 🙂


Why isn’t there a collective desire to be champions amongst Renault and Williams as they once were. Please don’t tell me it’s because Renault have Red Bull and just don’t care.


I like the sound of this. I am always a little sad for Williams and was worried for McLaren.


As a fellow scot I should be a DiResta fan. He is boring and blames his team when things don’t go his way. So I glad he is going. Perez and Hulk should be way better team.


Why PDR is boring ?

He is very good driver with loads of potential in him still left

PDR is fast and talented, he clearly deserves a race seat for 2014. Poorly these days money talks more in F1 than skill or talent

PDR has beaten sutil far too many times and scored more points than him. while Perez is not good enough and has been sacked by Mclaren.


PDR had to go. Good driver but i think DTM or Indycar would be his league. F1, Chew them up and spit them out


Both Indians & Mexicans eat spicey food. Indians like curry and Mexicans like tacos. It makes sense.


What part of the debate are these comments (12 and 39) in response to? Just pointing out the hypocrisy…

James Allen Reply:

December 13th, 2013 at 6:05 am

Please moderate the tone of your responses to other posters. We’ve deleted two which were downright rude.

Please help to keep the standard of debate high here, thanks


My comment is best comment.


Maybe add a curry/chile mix into the turbo for added boost


So then where does the German fit in? 😉


It seems Sergio likes the new double points idea

Read more below.


I think he’s just being polite, he can’t say what Vettel said, at least until he wins a race or two

On the other hand a good place for a midfield car at the end might make a good points difference


If you’d only scored 49 points in a season you’d probably like the idea of double points too 😉


Since their time at Sauber, I can’t help but compare Perez and Kobayashi and examine what has happened to each since.

Money wins, balls and spirit do not. Perez is about as exciting as watching paint dry.


KK was more exciting than SP, but too imply SP lacks an flair is absurd.


… and despite this exciting factor and passing talent KK will not return to F1 in next year…


Yes, his absence on the F1 grid is a shame.




Tyler, who could blame anyone from not liking the tactics of committing to a corner in such a way that the other driver has to yield (and lose a place) or be in a crash?!?

But boring like paint drying, I don’t think you’ve been seeing the same F1/Perez that I have; it is not boring!


Senna did that. People like him!


If this is about Monaco, I would remind that Jenson passed Sergio that way first, forcing Perez to go wide, and got to keep the position.

Sergio’s subsequent manoeuvres in that corner were because someone else did it to him first, and got away with it.

If you are not mentioning Monaco, my apologies.


I relate the pattern of going into a corner, so that the other driver must yield (and lose position), or crash, demonstrated by Checko.


That Monaco race was something else wasn’t it. Dull it was not. But racing it certainly wasn’t either!


I hope Paul can stick around in F1 – even as a reserve driver.

OK so he had a few rants but he’s a nice guy, and definitely has got some decent speed in him.

In the end of the day though it appears his wallet does not dig deep enough.

And obviously pay-drivers have always been a common occurance in F1, but it definitely seems like they seem to be carrying more levarage recently. Doesn’t seem to hold well for the immediate future does it.


This is great news. Thi was what I was looking for. A really strong line up in Force India. Paul never gave a feeling of a strong driver, just consistent at the most. Sutil has been very disappointing IMO with average performance. And to insult the team by calling it names just a year after they gave him a lifeline when he his career was almost over was disgusting. I see this new pair with great potential and some interesting results next year.

Also its easy to see how much Mallya wanted to drop Paul and Sutil. Not even a word about them after signing Nico or Perez. Honestly, nothing much to thank them for IMO.


Di Resta was vocally critical of the team over the radio whenever he qualified poorly, yes on occasion it maybe the teams fault but on many others it was his own fault.


Gutted for PDR



Me too

I cannot understand why people are glad that perez got a race seat for 2014 he has the money backing nothing else. Sutil was soundly beaten by PDR as well.

Paul has all the right to crticize Force India for the failure to improve machinery and reduce the operational errors in 2013. Vijay mallaya has gone for the money. Hulk is excellent choice yet PDR is better than the likes of perez and sutil.

Shame for F1 if PDR does not get race seat in 2014


glad he’s got a seat, wont beat his new teammate though


So now it’s FI that’s hired a ‘pay driver’, congratulations! Such a shame with talents like Di Resta can’t even get a seat.

I’m a long time F1 fan since my childhood and have been watching since I could barely walk in the late 80’s but the direction the sport is going with FIA constantly on a mission to lower engine power and dictating everything to suit them is just killing the show. Well Paul I hope him the best of luck but last year it was Kobayashi and now Di Resta but the likes of Maldonado and the talentless Chilton keeps getting seats, If these engines don’t perform next year I’ll be switching to Le Mans and Moto GP permanently.


What has di resta done to convince you he is an outstanding talent?


I agree pay drivers are bad for the sport but Di Resta has not done anything out of the ordinary to deserve a seat anyway. Just because you don’t have money doesn’t mean you have talent


Err… what about Sutil and the Medion money? Was it transferred directly to Salvation Army?

They picked up Sutil at the last moment for 2013(over Bianchi with some strong Ferrari connection, but VJ may be did not want to change FI into a number 2 Ferrari engine test team)

Some extra money is welcomed by FI, but perhaps if they have to make a decision between a mediocre moneysack driver and a talent like Hulk, they rather pick up the talent (or is it just for positive media). Lotus could not afford this because Raikonnen made a too good job, and their car was better than expected.


I don’t get people who call Perez a pay driver. For sure his financial help to the team would be a help especially to the midfield teams but he isn’t one of the drivers like Chilton or Maldonado who we know would be immediately out of F1 the moment their money runs out.

Cyril Abiteboul, the Caterham boss, believes “non paying drivers almost irresponsible.” – This is the bitter truth but Fans need to bite the pill and anyone who jumps up condeming this ‘new trend’ in the current F1 should go through the history books and see that it always existed. There were drivers who actually just bought a car with their own money and participated.

Perez seems a competent driver with 3 years of experience and makes himself a complete package with a sound (not astounding) financial backing.


James, do you have any commentary on how liquid driver market? Without all the drama with Pirelli and the ‘four times the torque’ new engines coming, wouldnt we be talking about the reunion of Nico and Force India, alongside the still promising Checo?

Maldonado also commenting on how Williams is the perfect place for Felipe baby. Very interesting, showing respect for Sir Frank all of a sudden. Perhaps he is foreshadowing a Romain Crash-jean style maturity in his attitude. Will he show it on track. Sauber with a Force India refugee and Estebans Eyebrows.

Lastly most enticingly is Ferraris last world champion alongside their supposedly future world champion. And McLaren? Is there much to say?

Tornillo Amarillo

But where is the Russian for Sauber…?…?


Maybe Grosjean gave to Maldonado his psychologist’s business card.


How liquid the driver market is this year? And also how silly is this season really compared to others?


“Coming here was always my first choice”

Doubtful – I’d be willing to bet that staying at McLaren was his first choice.

Good to see both drivers find a seat – especially Hulk – and hopefully with the extra dosh FI can continue to improve.


@Jock Ulah

^ This is why we use smilies. I think in retrospect typing…

Doubtful – I’d be willing to bet that staying at McLaren was his first choice 😉

…might saved some confusion 🙂


Obviously he meant after losing his MAC seat


Of course it was after loosing his seat at McLaren.. Read his comments again..


You’re right of course, but the way he worded it makes it sound like he wanted us to think this was his plan all along.

And yes I did read the article again 🙂


Please moderate the tone of your responses to other posters. We’ve deleted two which were downright rude.

Please help to keep the standard of debate high here, thanks


I like Di Resta, but I am glad the Sergio Perez will continue in F1; and I really like the pairing of Checko and the Hulk. After Kimi-Alonso, I like this team the best on the grid, and it is only a shame that they are not team mates on a top-group team.

I am pleased that Grosjean is leading the Lotus team, but it is one of these two, that I would rather he’d been head-to-head against.

Perez and Hulkenberg of very different styles, so it will be interesting and likely relevant on the developmental direction Force I takes.

The current machinery, it seems to me, is more in alignment with Hulkenberg’s style, but there is no way to know how their car will turn out for the first race 2014.

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