Sergio Perez confident Red Bull can take on Mercedes for constructor's title in 2022 F1 season

The 31-year-old Sergio Perez showed flashes of brilliance at Red Bull in the 2021 F1 season, but Mercedes still won the constructor's title.

Sergio Perez in a file photo. (Image: Twitter/@SChecoPerez)

Red Bull driver Sergio Perez is confident his first year at the team has better equipped him to help them launch a challenge for the constructor’s championship in 2022.

The 31-year-old Perez showed flashes of brilliance at Red Bull in the 2021 F1 season, but Mercedes still won the constructor’s title.

Max Verstappen beat Lewis Hamilton to the title in dramatic circumstances at Abu Dhabi. However, the Brackley-based team did enough to win their eighth straight team title.

“I was pushed to the limit by Red Bull Racing,” Perez told reporters.

“Not just the drivers – the engineers, mechanics and team bosses also have to give their best.

“Everyone works tirelessly to achieve the perfect result. That was a great experience that brought me to a whole new level as a driver.”

Perez consistently recorded points finishes, even winning the Azerbaijan GP after Verstappen had crashed out. But he still finished 36 points behind Valtteri Bottas, which is why Mercedes won the team championship.

However, his opponent this year will be different, as George Russell has replaced Bottas in the team. Russell, who’s made it through the ranks as a Mercedes junior, will present a different challenge to Perez.

That being said, the Mexican is confident that his year of experience has him in better stead for the 2022 season.

“Well, we already have a baseline that we can work from and improve that one so that makes a huge difference,” the Mexican added.

“I already know the people. I already know who to ask what and how to get the most out of every single individual around me. That’s a very different picture.”

Could Red Bull have helped Sergio Perez more?

That is the opinion of former F1 driver Jolyon Palmer, who believes Red Bull were too preoccupied with the title race and Verstappen.

“Mercedes were constructors’ champions again in spite of having a tough start in pre-season, rocked by rule changes that favoured the higher-rake Red Bull,” he told Formula1.com.

“Like the drivers’ championship, this was extremely tight throughout the season but Mercedes got on top of their car and came on strong in the latter half.

“There wasn’t a lot between the second drivers in each team either with Valtteri Bottas and Sergio Perez having very different strong suits – qualifying pace in the former’s case versus race craft in the latter’s.

“In the end, it felt like Red Bull were more pre-occupied by the drivers’ title as they sacrificed Perez’s race a couple of times at Silverstone and Abu Dhabi, while Mercedes possibly regretted ordering Bottas back past Hamilton in Austria.

“Maybe that means Red Bull were the more pragmatic last year to win the more coveted drivers’ title, but Mercedes will go down as the best team of 2021 in the standings.”

The 2022 F1 season will get underway in March with the Bahrain GP. Pre-season testing will begin in February as teams bring all-new regulation cars to the paddock.



WRITTEN BY
Sportslumo Desk

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