Perez seeking further improvement

23 October 2021 20:01:20 GMTPlus11
Perez eager to find extra pace

Sergio Perez believes Red Bull need to find a "couple of tenths" to hold of rivals Mercedes and claim pole position in Sunday's US Grand Prix.

Perez is 12/1 to be the fastest qualifier on Saturday with Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen priced at 5/2 and Mercedes rival Lewis Hamilton 4/7.

Perez impresses in Austin

Hamilton posted the fastest time in second practice on Friday but his lap was chalked off after marginally exceeding track limits and Perez ended the day at the top of the timesheets.

Perez was 0.257seconds ahead of McLaren's Lando Norris, with Hamilton third and Valtteri Bottas a further 0.05seconds back in fourth.

It was a frustrating session for Championship leader Verstappen, who clashed with Hamilton, as he had to settle for eighth.

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Flashpoint ahead of Sunday's race

Verstappen called Hamilton a "stupid idiot" over the team radio as they almost touched wheels when racing side by side down the pit straight.

Red Bull are 36 points adrift of leaders Mercedes in the Constructors' Championship and Perez admits they will need to get more out of the car on Saturday to secure pole in Austin, Texas.

Perez said: "Yeah it was a good day. Obviously, it's going to very tight. It's all about tomorrow, Saturday, trying to put it all together and trying to find those couple of tenths that could put us in the mix for pole tomorrow.

"It was a promising FP2 but there's a lot to be done to try and improve the car. I also feel that there's some margin to still improve our long-run pace. All in all it's a positive Friday but we will see tomorrow where we end up."

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