Perez remembers being ‘kicked out’ of Purple Bull junior check

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Perez will make his debut for Purple Bull subsequent weekend after leaving Racing Level on the finish of final yr, marking his first crew swap since 2014.

The Mexican starred via the 2020 season as he completed a career-best fourth within the drivers’ championship, in addition to taking his maiden F1 victory on the Sakhir Grand Prix.

Perez is the primary driver Purple Bull has signed for its senior crew from outdoors of its personal younger driver pool since 2007, when it signed Mark Webber from Williams.

He was a part of Ferrari’s younger driver programme till the top of 2012, when he joined McLaren as Lewis Hamilton’s alternative.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Sergio Perez, Purple Bull Racing RB16B

Photograph by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

However Perez has revealed that he first had talks with Helmut Marko about becoming a member of Purple Bull’s junior programme again when he was racing in Formulation 3, resulting in a check.

“In 2007, I used to be invited via my programme to do a check,” Perez recalled on F1’s Past the Grid podcast.

“It did not go properly. I had a difficulty with the seat, as a result of my knees had been hitting the wheel, so I could not flip. So I used to be fairly far off the tempo. I assumed that I used to be going to have the ability to kind out the seat and so forth.

“After I went again, I used to be simply kicked out. I did not have an additional likelihood. I used to be too sluggish. It was all about lap time. I used to be simply kicked out. I believe that was in 2007 or 2006.

“Then I went into Formulation 3. I used to be racing towards the Purple Bull drivers, and I used to be main the championship. I noticed him at Silverstone [and said] ‘Helmut, how are you?’

“‘We are going to beat you, we are going to beat you”, he was telling me. So, OK, ‘have a pleasant day Helmut.'”

Perez was supported all through his junior profession by Escuderia Telmex, serving to him transfer from British F3 into GP2 for the 2009 season, the place he raced for Purple Bull crew boss Christian Horner’s Arden crew.

He mentioned there was one other dialog about presumably becoming a member of Purple Bull throughout his time with the Arden crew, following a run to fourth place within the Silverstone function race.

“The opposite dialog was as soon as in GP2, my first yr with Christian,” Perez mentioned.

“After one good race I did in Silverstone. He got here to me and mentioned, ‘hey, what are you doing?’ and so forth.

“He informed me, ‘hey, you are doing alright, however you could have your individual driver programme, you do not want me.’ That was the ultimate dialog that we had, that I keep in mind.”

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Perez went on to complete second in GP2 in 2010 earlier than becoming a member of Ferrari’s academy forward of his F1 debut in 2011 with Sauber.

Requested if he thought it labored out for the very best not becoming a member of Purple Bull’s driver programme, Perez discovered it troublesome to invest.

“Who is aware of what would have occurred, what alternatives I might have gotten?” Perez mentioned.

“[It] positively helps to be a part of that junior programme. However I simply should say that I am extraordinarily grateful to [Dietrich] Mateschitz, to Helmut, Christian, Adrian [Newey], all of the Purple Bull household, as a result of to present me this chance, it is one thing nice.

“They’re pushed by outcomes. And nobody earlier than gave me the chance to be in a high automobile, so I simply should ensure that I ship now.”

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