Perez: Bahrain ‘big hit’ DNF put into perspective by Grosjean drama
Sergio Perez says his retirement from third in the Bahrain GP just three laps from the checkered flag was a ‘big hit’ but insists the setback was also put into perspective by Romain Grosjean’s harrowing crash.
Perez put a tight grip on a podium finish at Sakhir from the outset of Sunday’s race and looked set to boost Racing Point’s tally in the Constructors’ standings by a healthy 15 points.
But an engine failure three laps from the checkered flag robbed the Mexican and his team of a second consecutive top-three finish.
However, Perez admitted that his feelings of disappointment were made secondary by the good fortune that had befallen Grosjean earlier in the race.
“When I had to retire, it was a big hit personally, but I think after what happened today, you really put everything into perspective,” Perez told Sky F1. “For me, one podium less, one podium more, it doesn’t matter.
“The most important of the day is that Romain is with us, that he escaped that accident. We have to see what we are able to improve on the safety side, because we don’t want to see those kinds of accidents.”
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The lengthy red flag period after the opening lap drama and multiple replays on the teams’ screens of the dramatic footage of Grosjean’s crash made it hard for drivers to remain focused during the pause. And Perez was no exception.
“I think it’s a good lesson for all of us and see what we are able to improve in the coming tracks, in the future events, to make sure we don’t get to see an accident like this again,” said the outgoing Racing Point charger.
“The speed that he hit that is hard to do anything, but I’m sure there can be some improvements to be done.”
Unfortunately, Perez and Racing Point’s pain was McLaren’s gain, with the Woking-based outfit overhauling the pink squad and snatching third in the Constructors’ championship with two races to go.
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