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Sergio Pérez: “We have both cars between the Ferraris and that’s a good thing”

Sergio Pérez: "We have both cars between the Ferraris and that's a good thing"

Sergio Perez doesn’t believe he got the most out of his RB18 qualifying for the Azerbaijan Grand Prixbut the Mexican is still in the front row for Sunday’s race.

The Oracle Red Bull Racing driver was out of position on his final lap after a delay in the pits due to a problem with refueling his car between runs, meaning he made the long pit lane at the finish line without a drag. Baku . City Circuit when it mattered.

Pérez could still find enough time to put his car in the front row, but he couldn’t beat Scuderia Ferrari‘s Charles Leclerc to pole position. However, he hopes the team can do something strategic on Sunday to ensure they finish ahead of their Maranello rivals.

“We were sometimes on the limit and chasing the lap time en masse to try and improve, but unfortunately we didn’t manage to get the most out of it,” said Perez† “We had a little problem refueling my car in Q3 which meant we were out of order for our final lap, but I still think three tenths was probably too much to close the gap with Ferrari.

“I’m still in the front row and it’s a long race ahead where anything can happen, especially here. We have both cars in between the Ferraris and that’s a good thing.

“Tomorrow we’re going to work as a team to get Ferrari and it would be ideal to get a one-two – we’re going to push them hard.”

“It was difficult to find a good balance here” – Max Verstappen

teammate Max Verstappen found himself outdone by Pérez for the second consecutive race weekend, with the reigning World Champion feeling not well balanced enough to fight for pole position.

The current championship leader says they couldn’t find a perfect set-up for qualifying, but nevertheless he was able to put his RB18 in third on the grid, a position he believes he can attack for Sunday’s race win.

“You always take quite a lot of risk and push the car to the limit on a street circuit, but you also have to be happy with the balance of the car and I didn’t have that today,” said Verstappen. “It was difficult to find a good balance here, which means we don’t have consistency in how you approach your lap. There is still quite a bit of work to be done.

“Looking ahead to tomorrow, the lead up to the first corner is very short, but it’s a long race, let’s see what we can do. Ferrari has done some really fast laps and it looks like they have a good pace, let’s hope we can put some pressure on them.

“Previous races in Baku have shown that a lot can happen, we just have to stay calm and focus on having a good race tomorrow.”

Max Verstappen will finish third on the grid in Azerbaijan – Credit: Dan Mullan/Getty Images