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Ailing Perez to miss Friday practice?

A sickly Sergio Perez could make way for Esteban Gutierrez should his condition not improve ahead of Friday free practice at the Indian Grand Prix.
Just as Max Chilton thought he could steal a march on the man that beat him to third place in the GP2 Series standings, Esteban Gutierrez may get the opportunity to make his FP1 debut first.

Chilton was confirmed as Marussia's second driver for the opening practice session at next weekend's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix but Gutierrez, who remains firmly in the frame to make the full race line-up at Sauber in 2013, could get an early call-up to run in both Friday sessions at the Buddh International Circuit this weekend, after team-mate Sergio Perez arrived in India with a heavy cold.

The McLaren-bound Mexican driver was forced to cancel all media appearances today [Thursday], and his bosses at Sauber will monitor his condition overnight before taking a decision on whether he should run in free practice on Friday.

The 22-year old tried to drive in last year's Friday sessions in Canada, only to pull out due to the lingering effects of his massive Monaco shunt. On that occasion, he was replaced by veteran Pedro de la Rosa but, this time around, Gutierrez would be the logical choice, and is already on hand in India for just such an incident.

Although he has had the chance to sample Sauber machinery before, the Mexican has yet to do so during a grand prix weekend, but the opportunity – however unexpected – can only be of benefit ahead of his likely graduation to the top flight in 2013.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
12.10.2012-  Free Practice 2, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C31
07.10.2012- Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), Lotus GP
11.10.2012- Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), Test driver, Sauber F1 Team C31 and Sergio Pérez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C31
Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), third driver, Sauber F1 Team  - Sauber C31 Ferrari Launch
Sauber C36 Ferrari
Sauber C36 Ferrari
Sauber C36 Ferrari
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27.11.2016 - Race, Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C34 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 and Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Haas F1 Team VF-16
27.11.2016 - Race, Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C34
27.11.2016 - Race, Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34
27.11.2016 - Race, Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34 and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
27.11.2016 - Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34
27.11.2016 - Race, Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C34, Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR11 and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
27.11.2016 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09

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LJ - Unregistered

October 26, 2012 9:29 AM

@Mark It appears that way doesn't it, but the truth is he has had some great performances this year but the media do not talk about him. Perez' podiums have overshadowed Kamui's great qualifying. He got P2 in Spa on merit. Maybe he was lucky in Suzuka to start so far up on the grid, but you can say he used his brain he turned off DRS, didnt use KERS and kept his foot in. Other drivers evidently just backed off. He then drove a great race, focusing on keeping Button behind him all race. I will admit he has disappointed in some races too, especially the ones Perez has shined at.. But this is largely how the drivers get the tires working.. You look at Button in Canada for example and he was seconds off the pace of Hamilton, and I think we all agree he isn't *that* slow :).

Zeyar - Unregistered

October 26, 2012 1:42 AM

How was the qualifying due to others? He lifted in Q3 just like everyone else due to Kimi's crash. How is the podium any different? He jumped into 2nd and was maintaining that until Massa got the drop on him in the pits. He genuinely outdrove Button even though his car was clearly slower at the end and he wasn't far off Massa. Furthermore, it's not like he hasn't seen this pace before. He's qualified 2nd once and 3rd twice. That podium was about a skilled podium as you can get. Perez's podiums on the other hand, while skillful, were more to do with his risky tyre strategies.

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