As I said, I think Perez' car is set up more toward race pace and tyre preservation which obviously sacrifices his grid position. If he qualifies second then great. otherwise he's there to go long and be a blocker for the Mercedes cars at pit stop time, while Verstappen is free to run his own race. It's clear at some times in races he's driving to a plan rather than as quickly as he actually could go.Sieper wrote: ↑Thu Jul 15, 2021 10:57 amWhile that is true (imho) where did that ever effect a race by Perez? Max (bar Imola) outqualified Perez by a margin and even in that race he passed him on merit in the first meters (as he did with Lewis) so Perez did not have to do any "support" driving there. If you are talking about not fighting for position (whilst on a different strategy) in France, yes that is true, that happened. What did that cost Perez? Nothing, he would have never been able to keep Max at bay (like Bottas and Hamilton also couldn't). Now the support driving of Bottas. Giving a tow in Baku Qualy to Lewis (and Charles), check. Being asked over the radio to not attack Hamilton in Austria, check 2 (only later when their position was under heavy pressure of Lando they allowed Bottas through). I am sure I am forgetting examples but Bottas has had to compromise races on several occasions already, Perez not once. Yet Perez is the support driver and Bottas is not.El Scorchio wrote: ↑Thu Jul 15, 2021 10:26 amOne key difference. Perez is racing in support of Verstappen. Bottas isn't racing in support of Hamilton. Perez is often going to get put on contra strategies to help his team mate at the cost of his own result. I'm also fairly sure his car is set up massively toward race pace and extending tyre life rather than qualifying pace.
It probably took him a couple of races to get into the groove after moving to a new team/engine from being with the same one for seven straight seasons previously, but Perez is doing a great job.
Again, the key difference is that Perez is driving to support Verstappen's WDC campaign primiarily with the WCC being a bonus.
Bottas is driving to support Mercedes WCC campaign which as we know is their first priority over the WDC. Sometimes he will have to support Hamilton for WDC purposes. However let us not forget while Bottas has had to play the team game on some occasions, Hamilton has also had to cede position to Bottas on occasion as well which is usually conveniently forgotten. There have been some team calls at Hamilton's expense. Verstappen will never be asked to cede a position to help out the team.
In Austria 2 this year it's obvious the call to Bottas was to preserve WCC points to try and keep Norris behind them both. When it was clear the damage to Hamilton's car was making him too slow for that to work, they changed that and Bottas was free to pass.