Perez admits to Suzuka prank

By on Friday, October 14, 2011

Sergio Perez. Photo credit: Sauber Motorsport AG

Sergio Perez has admitted that he played a joke on his engineers during his run to eighth place at the Japanese Grand Prix, by telling them that he was losing power during the final laps.

The Mexican rookie drove a superb race at Suzuka to climb from 17th on the grid to eighth, and was so secure in the closing stages that he allowed him a prank at the expense of the nervous engineers on Sauber’s pit wall. “They were very excited that we were getting into the points,” he said in Thursday’s official FIA press conference ahead of the Korean Grand Prix.

“We had a problem, we had some vibrations and in the last part of the track, the last corner, I told them that I was losing power and they were quite afraid about it and when I crossed the line, it was a just a few seconds after they realised that it was just a joke!”

With four valuable points banked, the Mexican’s crew could afford to laugh about the prank and Perez arrives in Korea hopeful of another good event. “Suzuka was a very special race for me,” he said. “It was quite a good race, very good race, starting on P17. We had a hydraulic problem [in qualifying]. We thought the race was lost but our pace was very strong in the race. We managed very good strategy and it was very good to score some good points and hopefully we will keep up the momentum in the last races.”

Perez had the chance to drive the circuit on a simulator recently but admitted that after a track walk on Thursday morning that it looked a daunting prospect. “I went for a walk this morning and, of course, it looks very dirty,” he said. “The track, the layout, looks very promising. I have driven the circuit on the simulator already and I am looking forward to doing a good job this weekend. It is a very challenging circuit.”

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