Sergio Perez had a great weekend in Austin. The Mexican qualified third and held that position until the end of the race. After the race, Christian Horner is asked if Red Bull was considering bringing in Perez for the fastest lap of the race. That way he could have taken a point from Lewis Hamilton, who eventually took the fastest lap. In that case, Verstappen’s lead would now not have been twelve, but thirteen points.
At the same time, he would have lost his third place to Charles Leclerc and scored three (or two if he had set the fastest lap) points less. That’s why Red Bull decided not to do it. The team boss says it was not an option. “It would have been cruel to bring Checo in and take him off the podium,” Horner said in front of the microphone. RacingNews365. “Leclerc was clearly too close. It was therefore better for the whole team that Checo took the points. So that’s what we did,” explains the Briton.
Red Bull has acted differently in the past. For example, the team decided earlier this year in Silverstone to bring in Perez. The Mexican was then in tenth place and perhaps could have taken a few more points. Nevertheless, the team chose to have the driver make a pit stop in order to remove the point for the fastest lap from Lewis Hamilton.
However, in the last few races, Perez seems to be able to follow Verstappen’s pace a little better. Horner thinks the Mexican has more ‘confidence’ in the car and therefore performs better. “I think it was coming the last few races. In Monza he was strong, in Sochi he was strong. He should have been on the podium in both races. He had a strong race in Istanbul. So I think it was is just trust. For us he has to perform now, so it’s a nice result,” the team boss concludes.