SINGAPORE: Sergio Perez's Singapore Grand Prix victory was 'world class' and his best drive yet in Formula One, Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said on Sunday (Oct 2).
The race ended with Perez subject to a stewards' investigation for possible safety car infringements, but with the eventual five second time penalty making no difference to the result.
"That is without a shadow of a doubt the best drive of his career," Horner told Sky Sports television, with Perez's championship leading team mate Max Verstappen only seventh after five wins in a row.
"Tricky conditions, he’d nailed the start, converted the start, settled himself into the race, he looked after those intermediate tyres, safety cars coming and going, re-starts, and he just was always in control, super-cool.
"That’s world class, that is right up there. That’s for sure his best victory, I think it even surpasses his Monaco victory and under massive pressure he’s gone out and delivered. Just super, super proud of him. He’s done a wonderful job."
The victory was the fourth of Perez's career and third since the 32-year-old joined Red Bull in 2021 just when it seemed his F1 career had reached the end of the road.
He agreed with Horner's assessment.
"It was certainly, I think, my best performance. I controlled the race ... the last few laps was so intense," Perez told reporters.
"I didn’t feel it that much in the car but when I got out of it, I felt it. You know, I pushed. I gave everything for the win today."
The Mexican poured more water over his head than he drank in the cooling down room before stepping up to the top of the podium.
"This win is really special for me, because I've had a bit of a rough patch in the last few races," he said, referring to recent media coverage.
"If I'm not two races in a row in the podium, then I'm having a worst season ever and Red Bull should drop me and all that sort of stuff that you get to see.
"It’s not a reminder to anyone of how good I am. But it's just always good to be able to put together this sort of performances."
Perez won this year's Monaco Grand Prix, another tight street race where the smallest of errors can carry a hefty price, but had finished fifth and sixth in his previous two races while Verstappen dominated.
Starting on the front row with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc on pole, he seized the lead at the start and finished with a 7.5 second advantage.