The acquisition of Sergio Perez by Red Bull means that Checo and Max Verstappen are now teammates. So far, the pair have enjoyed a great relationship. But, Verstappen has said he had to apologise to Perez for something that happened between them in the past.
During the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix, Verstappen made contact with Perez’s car on the first lap. The collision forced Perez to pit and slip down the order, before ultimately fighting his way back to P7.
In an interview with Sky Sports F1, the Dutchman took the blame, saying, “I had to say sorry. I mean, it was chaos that first lap, even afterwards, like the whole lap to be honest was a bit tricky out there.”
The incident hasn’t resulted in any bad blood between the two drivers. Verstappen’s apology means there surely are no hard feelings at all.
He said, “It’s good. We can laugh about it. We have done both of us so many races.”
Three races into the season, Verstappen is firmly in the WDC race, with Perez 39 points behind him. He has been ahead of the former Racing Point driver on track except the time Perez outqualified him at Imola.
The Mexican insists that if it comes down to a point where both of them are fighting for a position, they are free to race for it.
“I think we can race,” Perez assured. “But it’s important to think of the team. It’s important to bring those points, as many points as possible.”
Even though Perez is still relatively new to Red Bull, he has been impressed by the constructors’ environment and work ethic.
He said, “I’ve been very impressed with the team. They just constantly search for performance in every single detail. I think that’s very important and that shows why they’ve been so successful.”