Bottas suffered a front-left tyre blowout while running in third place at the Losail International Circuit, dropping outside the top 10 after he recovered to the pit lane.

The Finn was fighting Perez for the final spot on the podium, with the Mexican opting for an early first pit stop.

Perez was just over five seconds ahead of Alonso and on course for a comfortable podium finish until Red Bull called him in for a second stop.

After seeing Bottas’ tyre blowout, Perez said that Red Bull had no choice but to put him on a two-stop strategy. 

“We played it safe with the explosions with the tyres out there,” Perez said after the race. “I think we were thinking more of the long-term picture. 

“I think when we saw what happened to the other cars we were a bit concerned [about] that, so we played it safe and in the end, I think we left some points on the table today but we managed to minimise the losses from today’s race.

“I think what happened to Valtteri put the thought in our heads. At the end of the day, it’s better than nothing.”

With the battle for the constructors’ battle so tight - just five points separate Mercedes and Red Bull going into Jeddah - Perez acknowledged that it was important to finish the race rather than take unnecessary risks.

“I did everything I could,” Perez added. “I gave my 100 percent and it was such an intense race. I think we didn’t maximise it in the end but it was a good performance and a good way to recover, especially starting P11, a lot of damage can happen. So to be able to come away with some points is good.

“It’s a lot that we are fighting for and I’m a team player. Of course, as a driver, you want to be on the podium but it is the championship that matters. And as I say, fourth is better than nothing.”