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Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing, 1st position, celebrates in Parc Ferme
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Analysis

How Perez profited in Baku to lay down his F1 title fight credentials

Sergio Perez swooped to secure an Azerbaijan Grand Prix sprint and main race double victory, on a weekend where he showed he was more than a match for Red Bull team-mate Max Verstappen. But given the Mexican’s prowess on the Baku streets, can he sustain his momentum into a full-blown title challenge?

It’s not uncommon for drivers to have “their” circuit. Monaco served as such for Graham Hill and Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher had the tricky Magny-Cours circuit wrapped around his finger, and Lewis Hamilton enjoys demigod status at Silverstone.

But Baku is Sergio Perez’s track, and it has been ever since it joined the Formula 1 calendar. In that first race in 2016, Perez qualified second, started seventh thanks to a penalty, and worked his way up to third in an unfancied Force India.

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