2020 has been an erratic year for Sergio Perez. The Mexican driver’s victory on Sunday was his first podium win after 190 races in Formula 1.
The first racer infected with Covid
Ironically, Perez may not even extend his F1 career beyond the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on December 13. And before his win, the most remarkable moments of the year were missing two races due to Covid-19. Besides, the Racing Point terminated him.
Perez dropped from both races at Silverstone this summer – British Grand Prix and 70th Grand Prix for two consecutive weeks – after testing positive for Covid-19. He is the first F1 driver to have such a positive and absent result.
It is known that Perez contracted the corona virus on a trip home in Mexico to meet his mother, who was hospitalized after an accident. He confirmed that he had complied with all necessary regulations and safety measures set by the racing team and the local government.
From a personal point of view, while the trip home is understandable, from a racing point of view it is a bitter pill. At that stage of the season, Racing Point had established itself as the third best team. They could challenge for a podium if two riders from Mercedes or Red Bull’s Max Verstappen were negligent.
Regrettably Perez’s replacement, Nico Hulkenberg, failed and came in seventh place. Given Hulkenberg’s limited experience, it’s fair to question what Perez could have achieved had he been.
In addition, despite missing two races, Perez currently ranks 4th on the rankings with 125 points.
Sacked by Racing Point
In August, Racing Point announced that Perez would leave the team at the end of the year. Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel will replace him. Perez entered this season feeling confident that the contract he signed with the team (due until 2022) will be honored, but then Racing Point owner Lawrence Stroll has a different opinion.
It is worth mentioning that while Racing Point’s decision is difficult to accept for Perez, he reacted like a professional racer. He always emphasizing his love for the team and determination to achieve high results. No coincidence, Perez’s form since that decision has been superb. Since the Belgian Grand Prix, he was in the Top 10 of the races, except for the recent Bahrain Grand Prix when his engine failed while holding third place.
Or at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Imola, a decision to enter the pits late under the safe vehicle cost him a place on the podium. At the Turkish Grand Prix, he finished second after a stellar performance . If Lewis Hamilton did mpt rank first, Perez could have been the winner in Istanbul.