Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Motorsport | Formula 1

Sergio Perez © Gallo Images

Show your elbows, McLaren tell Perez



McLaren new boy Sergio Perez has been told by team boss Martin Whitmarsh to use his elbows and make life harder for Formula One rivals.

"I think he's been very polite so far this year, I think he needs to toughen up," Whitmarsh told reporters after the Mexican finished a disappointing 11th in Sunday's Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai.

"I think he's been generous in allowing people past him. He was a bit more robust today."

Perez had a coming together with Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen on the track on lap 16, with the usually glacial Finn sufficiently exercised to exclaim heatedly over the team radio about the youngster's behaviour.

The incident damaged Raikkonen's front wing and prevented the 2007 champion challenging for the victory, eventually finishing second behind Ferrari's Fernando Alonso.

Stewards looked at the evidence and decided to take no further action rather than punishing Perez for this weekend's race in Bahrain.

The Mexican, who moved from Sauber at the end of last season as replacement for departed Lewis Hamilton, has scored two points in three races so far. Teammate Jenson Button was fifth on Sunday and has 12 points to his credit.

"I think it was robust. I've seen people weave more than that, if that's the assertion. He was doing his job, he was racing," smiled Whitmarsh of his driver's actions.

Perez's car was also damaged by the coming together but Whitmarsh said he had told the 23-year-old that he supported what he had done.

"You've got to be out there racing and that means sometimes you've got elbows," he said. "It's right that you've got to be robust without being dirty. And I think he was robust."

McLaren have been struggling to get their car up to speed after ending last year as the fastest team but starting this season some way off the pace with a new design instead of a simple evolution.

Perez has also had to contend with a world champion teammate, who managed to deliver far more points than the car deserved on Sunday, in a top team where the drivers are under close media scrutiny.

Whitmarsh said McLaren had no doubts about Perez's talent.

"With these sorts of tyres that are very fragile, with a car that's not quite there and tricky racing, I think he did a reasonable job but he's not satisfied with himself and nor should he be.

"This won't go down as his best weekend of the year."

Shop

Lewis Hamilton: My story
Lewis Hamilton’s explosive arrival on the Formula 1 scene has made front-page headlines
R112.64
Psychology of motorsport success
Motorsport is a highly addictive and extremely exciting activity
R369.89


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Other Live Streaming

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Latest Video Highlights

Sports Talk



Guest Column
Fit as an F1 driver
Nico Rosberg turns around with a grin during a slight uphill section, shouting "Hey, what's the...

Reuters on Motorsport
Team prospects for the 2013 F1 season
Team-by-team prospects for the Formula One season starting in Melbourne, Australia, on March.