Sergio Perez has defended his Racing Point team following confirmation rivals Renault F1 have lodged a protest against its car over its evident similarities to the 2019 title-winning Mercedes W10 car.

Dubbed the ‘pink Mercedes’, the Racing Point RP20 garnered a lot of attention over the winter for its striking similarity to the 2019-spec Mercedes W10 from its lithe shape, down to its unusually shaped nose cone.

With its Mercedes-sourced power unit and gearbox, the similar aerodynamics – which Racing Point insist have been based on its visual interpretation of the W10 – have raised concerns it now errs too closely to a direct customer car, which isn’t permitted in the regulations.

As such, Renault is taking its complaint to the governing body, though have previously said it predominately seeks clarity moving forward.

However, when asked by for a reaction to the protest, Perez says it doesn’t deserve to discredit the work done by the Racing Point crew to survive financial difficulties to emerge with a truly competitive car.

Whether it looks similar or not to the Mercedes, we cannot hide away that it looks similar to the Mercedes car but the most important thing for me is that we don’t take any praise off the boys back home, we have done extremely well with minimal resources.

“Things over the years have been extremely challenging for our team, with all the difficulties with the financial issues and so on.

“We always knew there was a potential in placd but we were not able to exploit is. So I want to give praise to all the factory, all the people working back home and trackside, they have done a tremendous job and I believe our car is 100% legal.”