Hakkinen: Sergio Perez will always remember this present day!

Two-time world champion Mika Hakkinen commented on the occasions of the Sakhir Grand Prix, which ended with an incredible victory for Sergio Perez, the primary Mexican driver in his profession.

Sergio Perez’s victory within the Sakhir Grand Prix final Sunday proves that in Method 1 all the things continues to be doable, and there may be actually one step from success to defeat.

Oddly sufficient, it was due to the pit cease on the primary lap, which Sergio was pressured to make after the collision with Charles Leclair, that he gained the tactical benefit, whereas George Russell’s hopes of successful the race have been dashed by issues with radio communications from Mercedes.

Method 1 was very fortunate that this season happened in any respect, however due to the superb work of the London administration of the championship, in addition to the groups and house owners of the circuit, we have been capable of keep away from the worst penalties of the pandemic. In any case, many different sporting occasions have been canceled.

Within the case of F1, this meant that the races have been held on a number of new circuits, and it was fascinating for me to observe the Sakhir Grand Prix in a really quick and quick ring configuration. Because the lap time on this monitor is lower than a minute, the groups and riders needed to work beneath robust strain – together with throughout the race it was essential to make selections in a short time.

Some riders have already had Covid-19, most notably each Racing Level drivers, Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll, however the information that Lewis Hamilton has grow to be contaminated clearly proves that it doesn’t matter what precautions you are taking, the virus can assault you. The World Champion needed to miss the race and I want him a speedy restoration.

However this mechanically meant that we have been in for a really uncommon weekend. I knew that George Russell would carry out properly on the wheel of Mercedes, as he’s a proficient and skilled racer, and now he had a fantastic alternative to show himself.

Like Valtteri Bottas, who at one time gained the GP3 title, George grew to become the champion of the youth collection, in his case F2, after which, like Valtteri, he made his debut in Method 1 with Williams. It stays a very good staff, even when it does not have essentially the most aggressive automotive proper now. However Williams makes use of the identical energy crops as Mercedes, so it appears to me that the transition to the championship staff was not related to some big adjustments for him, as some consider.

In fact, the Mercedes automotive is far quicker, and George did a fantastic job in coaching to get snug with it. From my very own expertise, I do know that if you happen to drive a non-competitive automotive for a very long time, as I did in Crew Lotus in 1991-1992, then you definitely simply cannot wait to leap into the cockpit of one thing quicker and present what you actually are. succesful.

I nonetheless get requested about my first McLaren trip after I beat Ayrton Senna in qualifying in 1993 in Portugal, however I can say that I used to be so pleased to lastly get a quick automotive that I raced at full velocity with none issues. !

Valtteri did what he needed to do in qualifying – gained pole place. George began from second place and it regarded like Mercedes was assured of a victory. As regular, the one risk got here from Max Verstappen, as on Friday he confirmed an excellent tempo on lengthy collection of laps, however on account of an accident on the primary lap, provoked by Charles Leclair, each instantly dropped out of the battle.

Charles had a fantastic qualification, displaying the 4th end result, however, sadly, made a mistake on the primary lap – on this sport you will need to be affected person, particularly if the race is happening on a dusty, sandy monitor.

However this episode turned out to be crucial: after the collision with the Ferrari, Sergio Perez instantly went to the pits to test if the automotive was not broken and alter the comfortable tires for a Medium set. Instantly, it turned out that this allowed him to achieve a tactical benefit.

His breakthrough from the final place to the highest three is admittedly spectacular. Overtaking guys like Crimson Bull racer Alex Albon and Renault driver Esteban Ocon shouldn’t be straightforward in any respect, however Sergio confirmed a fantastic tempo. This put him in an excellent place: when each Mercedes drivers had issues, Perez took the lead.

Till the sixtieth lap, all the things went to the successful double of Mercedes, and the choice to carry a double pit cease was right as quickly as this staff noticed {that a} security automotive appeared on the monitor as a result of accident of Jack Aitken. Though the Mercedes vehicles have been main with an enormous benefit, the staff wished to reap the benefits of the state of affairs and make a pit cease with minimal lack of time.

The mechanics chargeable for the tires in Method 1 groups are difficult. No matter occurs, they need to be certain that the suitable units of rubber are prepared on the proper time, warmed as much as the suitable temperature, and have the suitable strain. Errors have occurred earlier than, for instance, in 2016, Daniel Riccardo missed the victory within the Monaco Grand Prix as a consequence of the truth that at a crucial second of the pit cease the tires weren’t ready.

Attributable to issues with radio communication, George’s automotive was outfitted with two tires from a set supposed for Valtteri, who due to this fact needed to return to the monitor on an previous set of arduous rubber. All this occurred as a consequence of an unlucky set of circumstances.

The approach didn’t work because it ought to, and the staff needed to make fast selections beneath strain. Radio communication methods can malfunction, leading to inconsistent conduct, particularly if one channel overlaps the opposite.

I am unable to even say what number of occasions I had issues with radio communication, together with after I was main within the race. Often you may have time to double-check, request affirmation of the data, however when the circle lasts solely 54 seconds, because it was in Sakhir, the time is minimal. I’m certain that Mercedes will draw conclusions, however for George and Valtteri, all the things resulted in colossal disappointment.

In fact, then George had extra issues as a consequence of a puncture, but it surely grew to become clear that Sergio was in charge of the state of affairs, and there weren’t so many laps left earlier than the end line. He gained a landmark victory with Lance Stroll ending third – a day that Racing Level and proprietor Lawrence Stroll will always remember.

Plainly Sergio has choices for returning to Method 1, maybe in 2022, however I’m very pleased for him, as a result of he achieved his objective after so a few years of arduous and selfless work. I am certain that Sebastian Vettel, who will quickly take Sergio’s place on this staff, additionally paid consideration to his victory!

And there are three extra factors to notice. Firstly, I feel that the brand new riders, Jack Aitken and Pietro Fittipaldi, did a very good job, though they ended up within the final locations. Secondly, I’m sorry that Roman Grosjean is not going to return behind the wheel of a Method 1 automotive after a extreme accident on the Bahrain Grand Prix monitor. That is the suitable resolution, however I sympathize with him, as a result of his profession ended like this. However, nothing threatens his well being, he was capable of return residence, to his household, and sooner or later he’s nonetheless in pursuit.

Third, congratulations to Mick Schumacher, who gained the Method 2 title. He carried out properly within the youth collection and earned a spot in Method 1 subsequent season. I do know that the household is already happy with his achievements. I want him properly on the Haas staff and it is nice that the title Schumacher is returning to Method 1.

Now we’re ready for the ultimate race in Abu Dhabi, which is able to finish this unusual season. It isn’t but clear if Lewis will get better, so we have no idea if George will companion with Valtteri once more or not. However regardless of how issues unfold, Method 1 has one other alternative to please us with a fantastic race earlier than the winter holidays start.

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