It would have been close if Sergio Perez had dropped out of the Miami Grand Prix, reveals Red Bull team boss Christian Horner. A problem with a sensor on one of the cylinders was the culprit for the Mexican, who couldn’t really attack in the closing stages.
Pérez was chasing Carlos Sainz on the first stint in Miami when he suddenly signaled on the on-board radio that he was losing power. This caused some controversy on the ship’s radio, as its engineer reported that the power unit was in good condition. “I’m losing power, how can you say the engine is good?” Pérez asked at the pit wall. He then received instructions to avoid the worst and was also able to continue driving, but he was close to having a breakdown.
“It was very tight,” said team principal Christian Horner. “We had to replace the sensors to solve the problem. So that’s something we’ll be working closely with HRC to understand and of course make sure it doesn’t happen again in the future.
“He had a problem with a sensor on one of the cylinders,” Horner explains the problems for Pérez. “The boys managed to move the sensors, but it probably lost 20 kilowatts (27 hp, editor’s note) in power as a result.”
“Even with the advantage of the new tyre, he was probably half a second behind what the car can do on the straights,” added Horner. “And I think he probably would have even finished second without it,” said the Red Bull team principal.
Pérez himself was disappointed, because according to him Red Bull could have made a one-two, like at Imola. “We had incredible pace in the car, I put pressure on Carlos, I was careful with my tires in the first stint and then came this problem with the engine. It’s a shame. We had the speed to aim for the podium, I pushed as hard as I could,” Pérez said.
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