Checo Perez post-Austrian GP interview: It’s been tough, but we can achieve consistency

Overcoming illness and penalties, Perez makes a thrilling comeback to secure a podium finish in the Austrian Grand Prix.

“It was a good comeback,” commented Mexico’s Sergio ‘Checo’ Pérez as he left the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, where he took third place on the podium of the Austrian Grand Prix, the ninth of the Formula One World Championship.

Max Verstappen (Red Bull) won the Austrian GP 2023, followed by Charles Leclerc, in a race characterized by warnings and penalties for exceeding track limits.

What happened to ‘Checo’ Perez at the Austrian GP?

The driver from Guadalajara had an eventful Grand Prix from which he managed to recover, since last Thursday he did not show up at the start of the paddock activities due to health problems, as Red Bull informed in a statement: “He felt ill last night and is taking the day to rest.”

After that, the Mexican continued his bad run on Friday in qualifying, as he was eliminated in Q2 for exceeding track limits.

His recovery started towards Saturday, when he finished second in the sprint race, despite arguing with Max Verstappen after fighting him for the first position in the first corners that day. They even argued over the radio.

After his double podium this Sunday, ‘Checo’ commented: “I’m very happy. It has not been an easy weekend, personally, physically. It was a weird week, a lot of fever and no sleep, but we recovered with the team. It was a fantastic strategy and great pace.”

Perez gave stiff competition to Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) for that third position. The Spaniard even said over the radio, “He’s bullying me.”

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“It was a very tough fight but fair. It’s always a pleasure to fight with them,” explained the Mexican, who this Sunday put an end to a bad streak that extended over the previous three races: those of Monaco, Spain, and Canada.

“It’s been a bad streak for me; I hope I can enjoy consistency again from now on; it’s a good comeback,” he concluded.

‘Checo,’ born 33 years ago in Guadalajara (Jalisco), now has 148 points in the F1 championship, 81 less than his teammate, Dutch Max Verstappen, who this Sunday signed his seventh victory of the year.

Results of the Austrian GP 2023

This was the top 10 of the race at the Red Bull Ring circuit in Spielberg (Styria):

  1. Verstappen
  2. Leclerc
  3. Pérez
  4. Sainz
  5. Norris (driver of the day).
  6. Alonso
  7. Hamilton
  8. Russell
  9. Gasly
  10. Stroll

Here’s how the 2023 Formula 1 drivers’ championship is going:

  1. Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing) – 229 points
  2. Sergio Pérez (Red Bull Racing) – 148 points
  3. Fernando Alonso (Aston Martin) – 129 points
  4. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – 108 points
  5. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) – 86 points
  6. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) – 72 points
  7. George Russell (Mercedes) – 70 points
  8. Lance Stroll (Aston Martin) – 43 points
  9. Esteban Ocon (Alpine) – 31 points
  10. Lando Norris (McLaren) – 22 points
  11. Pierre Gasly (Alpine) – 17 points
  12. Nico Hülkenberg (Haas) – 9 points
  13. Alex Albon (Williams) – 7 points
  14. Oscar Piastri (McLaren) – 5 points
  15. Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo) – 5 points
  16. Guanyu Zhou (Alfa Romeo) – 4 points
  17. Yuki Tsunoda (Alpha Tauri) – 2 points
  18. Kevin Magnussen (Haas) – 2 points
  19. Logan Sargeant (Williams) – 0 points
  20. Nyck de Vries (Alpha Tauri) – 0 points