Perez plays down qualifying shunt

By on Saturday, November 23, 2013
Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

Sergio Perez has played down the size of his accident during qualifying for the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Perez lost control of his McLaren exiting turn five and hit the wall, damaging the right hand side of his car.

The Mexican will start his final race for the team from 14th place on the grid.

"It’s hard to know for sure, but I think we made the correct decision to run in qualifying when we did, but the car wasn’t responding properly. I think perhaps we got the tyre pressures incorrect because I couldn’t find enough grip out there," he said.

"My accident in Q2 looked bigger than it actually was – as soon as I lost the car, I went over the grass and hit the wall – but it was only a slight hit, and the car wasn’t too badly damaged."

"It’s a pity, but I was giving it my all. I knew it was my last opportunity to set a time; it was getting wetter, and I was pushing right to the limit, because I knew the car wasn’t responding well."

Team-mate Jenson Button was also eliminated in Q2 and will start from 15th on the grid.

"We were running a low-downforce configuration, which probably didn’t help either," he said. "We felt that set-up was working for us yesterday, when it wasn’t as wet, but it probably hurt us in getting pressure into the tyre."

"Still, we were good in Q1 – I ended up in P7 – but, when it rained harder in Q2, I couldn’t get enough temperature into the tyres."

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