Sergio Perez is “massively underrated” and “one of the best” drivers in Formula 1, according to Racing Point technical director Andrew Green.

Perez has been one of the most consistent performers in F1’s midfield in recent years and finished seventh in the 2019 championship standings, behind only McLaren’s Carlos Sainz and drivers who raced for the top three teams.

Since his arrival in F1 with Sauber in 2011, the Mexican has also been recognised for his impressive tyre management abilities, and Green says his skill level is so high it is almost like he has “built-in traction control”.

“He’s massively underrated,” Green told Formula 1’s Beyond the Grid podcast. “I think he’s absolutely at the peak of his career now, he’s not fazed by anything.

“His feedback has always been amazing, his mental capacity to drive the car and feed back on what the car is doing – and on a Sunday afternoon with the race around him – means for me he is one of the best.

“His tyre management is in the top two or three on the grid, there’s not many who can do better. He just has that feeling as he goes into the corner of what the tyre’s doing, what it needs, what he needs out of it.

“His slip control on the throttle coming out of the corners is just remarkable, it’s like he’s got built-in traction control.”

While Perez has often excelled in race conditions on a Sunday, his qualifying record on a Saturday has sometimes let him down. Green believes that Perez’s choice of set-up style and preference to prioritise races explains why he can be prone to low-key one-lap performances.

“He understands that his weakness is a Saturday afternoon in qualifying,” Green said.

“But I think part of that is driven by the fact that he likes to set the car up for his driving style on a Sunday afternoon. And sometimes that isn’t always the quickest way to set your car up on a Saturday afternoon.

“But he’s absolutely insistent, ‘this is the way I want it’. And I think time and time again, he’s proven to be right.

“Occasionally he overdoes it and we end up poor on Saturday and Sunday, but it’s very rare.”

 

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