Perez “here to win” but respects team orders

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Red Bull driver Sergio Perez (Canadian GP win – Perez 11/4, Verstappen 8/11F, Leclerc 9/2) insists he wants to win the F1 drivers’ title this year, while stressing he will comply with team orders if asked to do so.

The Mexican has had a good season so far and looks to be in the title race along with team mate Max Verstappen and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.

He has taken one victory this year when winning the Monaco Grand Prix, along with a quartet of runners-up finishes in races this year.

It means he is currently on 129 points, 21 behind Verstappen and 13 ahead of Leclerc (Title outright – Verstappen 1/3, Leclerc 10/3, Perez 12/1).

Despite his performances being much improved from last year, Dutchman Verstappen is still being treated as the clear number one driver for Red Bull and team orders have already had an impact this season.

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In the Spanish Grand Prix, Perez was asked by the team to concede first place to Verstappen owing to the two being on different tyre strategies – a decision the 32-year-old described as “unfair”.

As the F1 paddock heads across to North America for this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix, Perez says he is will accept whatever team orders come his way though is confident in his ability to challenge for this year’s title.

“If they tell me to do it, I would do what they asked me to do,” he insists.

“If I was here thinking I want to finish second, I should stay home instead. I’m here because I want to win and I think I can do it.

“I think I drive at an extremely high level,” he added. “Maintaining this level every week and all season is what will open the door to fight for the championship.”

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Author: Lucille White