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Perez’s Miami defeat a “large psychological blow” in F1 title race

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Perez had arrived in Miami simply six factors again from Verstappen within the drivers’ standings and with a 2-2 file for GP race wins following his triumph in Jeddah and his Baku victory double within the first dash weekend of the season.

The Mexican driver’s possibilities of taking the lead within the standings had been then vastly enhanced within the first of three 2023 races within the USA when Verstappen’s early Q3 mistake in Miami qualifying was compounded by Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc crashing on the ultimate runs and stopping anybody bettering. 

That meant Perez certified on pole and Verstappen languished in ninth. 

However the subsequent day, Verstappen had catapulted himself into victory competition with a serene rise on a contra-strategy in comparison with the preliminary chief within the early levels, then handed Perez shortly after making his sole pitstop within the race’s second half. 

PLUS: The 10 best race drives of F1 2023

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“The primary 4 or 5 races he was very, very sturdy,” Horner stated of Perez in an unique interview with Autosport. 

“And it was actually after Miami that I feel that was a giant, psychological blow for him – shedding that race.

Photograph by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

Max Verstappen, Crimson Bull Racing RB19, passes Sergio Perez, Crimson Bull Racing RB19, for the lead

“Then off the again of that, Monaco Q1, making a mistake.  

“You already know, confidence is such an important factor on this sport and I feel that that momentum that he constructed up – as a result of his races in Saudi and Azerbaijan had been really excellent – [was hit].  

“I imply, Azerbaijan he had the clear sweep with a dash win and the grand prix itself.  

“So, by the point we headed again into Europe, it began to disintegrate for him. After which there was type of peaks and troughs.  

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“I imply he drove, for instance, an excellent race in Monza, made an amazing name in Zandvoort within the moist, then sadly errors began to creep in as he put extra strain on himself.  

“However what was good to see is him choose his kind up once more on the finish of the season.  

“And, after all, to realize second place within the championship – one thing he is by no means performed, one thing we have by no means performed – to realize a 1-2 end.” 

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