Max Verstappen reveals if his car is ‘equal’ to Sergio Perez’s

Max Verstappen has broken his silence on Sergio Perez's ongoing struggles at Red Bull Racing.

Max Verstappen left no room for ambiguity as he asserted the equality of Red Bull’s cars, addressing the performance gap between himself and his teammate, Sergio Perez, following a commanding pole position win at the Japanese Grand Prix.

During qualifying at Suzuka, Verstappen secured the top spot, while Perez had a tougher time and could only manage fifth place. 

Oscar Piastri, Lando Norris, and Charles Leclerc occupied the positions between the two Red Bull drivers.

Verstappen’s performance demonstrated a significant gap of over five tenths of a second between him and Piastri, who qualified second, while Perez trailed the reigning world champion by nearly eight tenths of a second.

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Perez admitted to having a challenging qualifying session and couldn’t provide a straightforward explanation for his loss of pace. 

He shared his thoughts with Viaplay, stating, “It wasn’t as straightforward as I was expecting it, I really had a scrappy qualifying.” 

Despite his struggles, Perez praised his teammate, saying, “I think Max has been on a very high form, and I haven’t been able to extract the maximum from the car, haven’t been comfortable since I got here, so we tend to see these sort of gaps.”

When questioned about the significant speed difference between him and Perez, Verstappen responded with confidence, saying, “No, all I can say is that the cars are equal.” 

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His succinct response carried a subtle implication that Perez’s inability to close the gap was a result of his own performance.

In contrast to Red Bull’s challenging weekend in Singapore, Verstappen’s spirits were much higher in Japan, particularly regarding the performance of his RB19 car. 

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He praised the car’s balance and performance during the entire weekend, stating, “The whole weekend has been going really well, and the balance of the car was just top notch, so that’s why I could really floor it, so to speak.”

 Verstappen reiterated this sentiment on Sky Sport, emphasising the confidence the car gave him, enabling him to push it to the limit while maintaining control. 

He added, “When you have that confidence, especially in sector one, you can really push it to the limit in a controlled way. It brought a smile on my face while driving.”