Sergio Perez believes Force India’s fresh investment will enable the team to “deliver to a new level” and “make the next step” in the 2019 Formula 1 season.

Force India faced an uncertain future until it was rescued from administration from a consortium headed by Canadian businessman Lawrence Stroll in the summer, with Perez himself playing a major role in the takeover.

The Mexican, who recently penned a new deal to remain with the Silverstone-based squad in 2019, is convinced Stroll’s investment will place Force India in a much stronger position heading into next season.

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“It’s going to make a big difference where the team will start,” Perez said.

“We generally have a good package but it comes really late in the season, we should be having a strong baseline from race one onwards, and that should make a big difference.

“Saying that, I can’t take anything away from the team. We’ve been extremely successful with the limitation we’ve had, the last two years we’ve been best of the rest. The team has been fourth. There’s plenty of encouragement and big expectations.

“I think [with] the level of investment, where the team is going to start the season, the development rate, we have to deliver to a new level. I hope we can make the next step.”

Having forfeited its previous points tally this year following the takeover, Force India currently occupies seventh place in the constructors’ standings heading into the season finale in Abu Dhabi.

When asked how close Force India can now get to F1’s leading teams, Perez, who is set to be partnered by Lance Stroll next year, replied: “Lawrence is willing to put this team into the next step and the next step has to be the top three.

“You’re fighting big budgets, big facilities but I believe with the right investment and guidance, this team can be one to watch for the new future. I’m optimistic that already next year, we should be making a good step forwards.

“Lawrence is really enthusiastic and very optimistic about the team and willing to take this team to the next level, he understands racing, he believes a lot in what he has bought.

“I want to be part of this next generation of the team, we have very promising times ahead of us.”

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