F1 Winter Break
Sergio Perez says he’s staying at Force India F1 but McLaren nightmare still haunts him
Sergio Perez
Posted By: James Allen  |  15 Sep 2016   |  4:35 pm GMT  |  30 comments

Sergio Perez has said that he will stay at Force India next season, but cannot confirm it until all the details are finally signed off. Based on painful experience of thinking he had a new McLaren contract for 2014, only to find that he did not, Perez is not willing to tempt fate.

He had hoped to announce his plans this weekend, but more time is needed to finalise everything. Perez has also been speaking to Renault and Williams was also a possibility.

Sergio Perez

“It’s nice to have the situation I have with options on the table, but as a driver you would like to clear your mind of that,” Perez told NBC Sports in Singapore this afternoon. “It looks as if I’m going to stay.

“But because of my past experience with McLaren; everything was pretty much sorted then last minute there was a change. In F1 everything can change, but everything seems to be that I am going to stay for another year.”

Perez’ decisión to stay at Force India leaves Renault still looking for a name driver. Valtteri Bottas has been noticeably enigmatic this afternoon, saying that “it’s still not obviously confirmed if I will be with Williams or not” next season and adding that he is still negotiating.

Valtteri Bottas

Canadian teenager Lance Stroll is now considered a racing certainty for one Williams seat, but Bottas is coveted by Renault boss Fred Vasseur, with whom he won the GP3 championship. Vasseur and Toto Wolff are close friends and allies and Bottas’ career is managed by Wolff, so there are a number of synergies. But French colleagues say that Renault would have to pay a severance fee to Williams in order to release Bottas, which is considered unlikely. Romain Grosjean is locked in at Haas, so options for a name driver are rapidly running out for Renault.

That said, there was a toughness and edge to Bottas’ tone and body language on this topic today which suggests that he is trying to use Renault’s interest to boost his contract terms.

Although the points table says that Williams has 111 points to Force India’s 108, the real picture is slightly different. Since introducing its revised chassis in Spain, Force India has scored 100 points to Williams’ 61, so if they keep up that strike rate, they will finish 4th in the Constructor’s championship, ahead of the Grove team. It would be the best finish in the team’s history.

Sergio Perez

“It will be a huge thing for everyone, it would be amazing,” said Perez. “I look forward to being part of that history, I’m not too carried away with it at the moment, but I think it’s definitely possible, If we keep doing the same things to the end of the season we will be in a good position.”

The form book certainly looks positive for Force India going into the street circuit event at Singapore. In Monaco the team bagged 23 points, its largest single race haul of the season, while Perez was on the podium in the other street track, Baku. Williams has struggled on street tracks this season.

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Sergio Perez is a great driver!


Sergio Perez is the most enigmatic driver in F1 right now. Unbelievably naturally talented, with raw qualifying pace his only real weaknesses. However, his 2013 season at McLaren was tainted by accusations of Perez possessing a poor attitude, impeding his self-improvement. Perez is almost like this generation’s Giancarlo Fisichella- naturally gifted, but lacking that drive to transcend himself to the next level. Having said that, I think Checo is definitely underrated and more worthy of a top drive than Hulkenberg. Hulkenberg is obviously faster, but he tends to perform inconsistently in races, collides with midfield drivers regularly and struggles with ill handling and car imbalance. Hulk has become popular with fans, but he’s two and a half years older and hasn’t progressed as many anticipated he would when he debuted with Williams in 2010. He’s had his moments (pole at Interlagos 2010, leading at Interlagos 2012, 3rd in Monza qualifying 2013) but he’s flatlined in his career similar to Valtteri Bottas.

Tornillo Amarillo

I think we don’t have too much information for giving an informed opinion…

That’s why I will give my opinion: everything seems to play in favor of MAGNUSSEN, because he wants the drive at Renault and because he show a podium and some good experience in F1. Maybe Kevin doesn’t need to ask a big salary for 2017 in order to get the seat.

In the other hand, PALMER have showed little and not too much experience, so I cannot say he has something really valuable in his favor to show there.

It seems than OCON could be a Renault driver for 2017, eh?
so it remains one seat. MAGNUSSEN. Does it.

BOTTAS-STROLL for Williams. No doubt.

Ferrari is done for 2017, McLaren too. Merc too.

Freak, can be this weekend THE weekend for HULK?


The silly season for the leftovers is hot!
According to this article:
> Sainz to Renault in exchange of horses [HP].
Carlitos is signed for one more year w/ TR, but Renault would make a discount on the engine supply deal.

> Nasr is coveted by Williams to partner Stroll.


Renault tried to get Sainz, but he’s locked down, is my info


And I suppose that Perez would not want to go to Renault either, if Force India offering him the seat to stay?


Renault needs a race winner to lead the team – wonder if they still have Crashtors number on speed dial…….


Sergio Perez shouldn’t worry about his time with McLaren. The car he drove was a dog and they’ve not been any better since. He’d certainly have lost his seat when Honda supplied the engines, as he’d have been up against Jenson Button who spends as much time politicing as he does driving.


And by equal measure Perez spends as much time moaning about his time at McLaren.


What makes you think that he does? Knowing the nature of journalists, he’s probably asked about his time at McLaren in every interview. Then the writer puts his slant on the answer. Even more likely, some don’t bother asking, just repeat what they’ve heard before.


Given that Magnussen disappointed, are McLaren they got rid of Checo now?


Almost certain that McLaren has no regrets ditching Petez with a line up of Alonso and Vandoorne and Button in the wings.


Sergio Pérez has demonstrated his talent before and after MacLaren which should open the door for a top drive soon. Have Jenson, Fernando or Kevin done anything noteworthy at MacLaren in those same years? So why are people always discussing Sergio’s past as an impediment to his promising talent?


I think there was a lot more to it than the track performances. But the assumption was that Perez, Magnussen and Alonso would wipe the floor with Button, and they didn’t. Which I would say underlines the fact that Jenson is perennially underrated rather than a criticism of those particular drivers and their abilities.


Perez is a midfield legend and with him staying with Force India is the right choice as he can fly under the radar whilst bagging points which is different from a top team as there you have too much pressure to perform and score podiums/wins

Certainly the Perez-Hulkenburg partnership has been a success as both work well together to lift up the team

As for Renault, they can pretty much get any driver on the grid just as long as they’re willing to pay the huge wages which is important because an ace driver within a team not only pushes everybody to give their best but also attracts sponsors to the team

But if Renault are not yet willing to pay the big wages, perhaps they’re not yet serious about winning titles


I am so fed up of hearing Perez moan about his time at McLaren. He was n’t good enough. So I doubt Ferrari would be a wise move as you say.


@ W Johnson

Oh no, I didn’t say Perez should go to Ferrari but rather him staying at Force India was the right choice


“fly under the radar whilst bagging points … (not like at) a top team as there you have too much pressure to perform”
He should move to a Williams then – their team motto seems to be “aim for mediocrity, it’s easier to achieve your goals”


@ Axel Knutt

Oooo that is harsh


It’s exactly PTSD from a war zone Perez !!
Get over it !!
🎃🎃OK you can have a haunt day on Halloween 🎃🎃 Booh👻👹
Otherwise give Paul Mckenna a ring for a hypnosis session 😨


If Williams sign Stroll James may opinion shows that they are entering another period of slow decline after a promising start to the hybrid era in 2014 . After all it should be noted that Ferrari considered Stroll to be too sub standard to remain part of the FDA ( Ferrari Driver Academy as Ferrari decided to focus on Charles Leclerc’s development instead ) so he can’t be that good so why is he likely to be good enough it seems for Williams if Williams are serious about trying to be nearer the front? I
t’s baffling.
By even considering Stroll this shows me they aren’t . Stroll could leave Ferrari with egg on face but somehow I doubt it . Moreover, Williams thought Bottas was special but sadly he is nowhere close to being as good Hakkinen or Raikkonen at their best and at similar age to what Bottas is now. If Bottas was special he would be beating Massa even more convincingly.
Valtteri is more of a Heikki than Kimi or a Mika I think at the moment . .What is your view on the points i’ve made James as I would be interested to know your view? Am I being harsh here?


No they will go for Alex Fynn


unfortunately for williams the star drivers in lower formulas have been signed by the big teams. they have to pick the best of who’s left. bottas has served williams well, he’s beating massa (who beat kimi in ’08 – ’09) and that’s what matters. since 2014 it’s the cars decline in competitiveness that’s more of a problem, not bottas.


Top speed at Monza through the checkouts in qualifying: Williams 222 MPH, Force India 221 MPH, Mercedes 219 MPH, Red Bull 216 MPH. Pretty impressive by Force India, not only very agile around the streets of Monaco and Baku with Checo’s double podium, but fast in top speed too. Bodes well for Singapore for FI.

With a 6 MPH natural top speed advantage for Williams over Red Bull, how dozy was Bottas in his battle with Daniel Ricciardo? Frank Williams and his shareholders must have flat when the Finn went all submissive at Turn 1. Even taking into account DRS, it was still a lousy piece of defensive driving, or being “mugged” in racing speak.


Bottas’ internal monolog down the straight (purely speculation):

“Yes I see you there Ricciardo think you’re so clever trying to slipstream me down the straight but we both know that my car is a lot faster than yours and there’s no way that you can WHAT THE DEUCE!!!” :O


Bottas’ internal monolog down the straight (purely speculation):
I fucked up Max on his Baku Qualifying….don’t try to slipstream the master…..you’ll loose trying to play those dirty tricks on me….


Yes, there’s been a lot talked about that pass from RIC’s perpective, but I think it says even more about BOT. That was a fairly pedestrian defense.


James – how and why is Toto Wolff managing Bottas’ career? Where does he find the time?! What if Bottas in a Renault starts beating the Mercedes? Would Mercedes be happy he engineered this deal?!


Nice question. Sometimes the managers have to know the new developments in the car to think whether it is worth signing a contract. Why would any team reveal that to Toto is beyond me. Should not Valteri look for another Manager like Robertson who seems to find good seats for Kimi at will?


“What if Bottas in a Renault starts beating the Mercedes? Would Mercedes be happy he engineered this deal?!”

Probably not, but I’m guessing they’d probably be more distracted by the flying pig 😉

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