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Formula 1 Monaco GP

Perez blames stickers, traffic for Monaco F1 qualifying "disaster"

Sergio Perez lurched from "finding the light" in Monaco Grand Prix practice to a "disaster" in Formula 1 qualifying, and blamed traffic and advertising stickers for his Q1 exit.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB20

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

The Mexican driver managed to find his way into fifth after Saturday's earlier FP3 session, although brusquely noted that his Red Bull was "nowhere" ahead of the run-in to qualifying.

His team made duly set-up changes to the RB20, but these were not enough to help Perez progress any further into qualifying and he ultimately shook out in a lowly 18th, only outqualifying the Saubers.

Reflecting on his session, 2022 Monaco winner Perez felt that the proliferation of traffic was primarily to blame - but also reckoned that the peeling stickers that had been scrubbed off the wall by passing cars also had an effect.

"It was a disaster because firstly on my lap I encountered a lot of traffic into Turn 6, into 7 and there were some stickers laying down on the apex of 8 so I had to avoid all of that," Perez rued.

"I ended up losing a couple of tenths that would have been enough to get through. I was half a second off P1 so it was just a complete disaster, unfortunately."

Perez was almost two tenths short of breaking through into Q2, having failed to improve sufficiently on his final run of Q1 to dislodge Esteban Ocon's lap time in 15th.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB20

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB20

Photo by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

He felt that glimmering signs of progress after FP3 had not been delivered upon, and noted that his weekend was now "over" given the notorious difficulty of passing on the Monte Carlo circuit.

"And basically, the weekend is totally over because here there is no chance to overtake unfortunately," he added.

"This morning we were finding the light. You know, I was P5. We made some more changes, but unfortunately, there were not enough to come through.

"And it hurts a lot, you know, because I think just by putting normal lap in, it would have been enough, but with the traffic that we encountered, it was really difficult."

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