Pérez hopes for more consistency from the FIA: ‘As a driver it hurts a lot’

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Pérez hopes for more consistency from the FIA: 'As a driver it hurts a lot'

Sergio Pérez calls on the FIA ​​to be more consistent in punishing drivers for defensive driving. The debate over what is and is not within limits has flared up again in the paddock after Fernando Alonso was given a 20-second penalty for his defensive actions on the final lap of the Australian race. According to Pérez, the punishment for the Spaniard was a bit too much.

After the race at Albert Park in Melbourne, Alonso received a twenty-second time penalty for the way he defended against George Russell on the final lap of the race. The Mercedes driver crashed as a result of the Spaniard’s defensive actions. A debate has flared up ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix as to whether Alonso’s penalty was justified, although the majority of drivers are surprised the incident led to a sanction.

Pérez also thinks the punishment is actually too strict, and therefore fears that the measure will expose a lack of consistency within the FIA ​​if similar incidents are ignored in the future. ‘My opinion is that it (the punishment, ed.) was certainly a bit too much over the limit. I would even say a bit unnecessary,” the Mexican told Motorsport.com. “But my biggest fear is that we might see this incident again this weekend or next weekend and probably nothing will happen. That’s my biggest fear because we have a lot of trouble keeping the consistency within the penalties.”

Pérez wants to see consistency

Pérez also immediately mentions an example of when similar actions to those of Alonso in Melbourne were done by other drivers. ‘For example, in Jeddah there was a blockade by Bottas in Q1 at 300 km/h with two cars, Bearman and Albon. No punishment.’ Pérez himself also made a similar defensive action during qualifying in Australia, and was punished for it again. ‘I blocked Hulkenberg, he lost half a tenth. He went faster on the next lap and I took three places. So I think the biggest talking point has to be consistency. If these types of incidents are punished, it should happen every weekend. Because as a driver it hurts a lot when you work hard and then see this inconsistency.’

The Mexican also believes that the drivers are mature enough to determine for themselves what falls within the limits. “I think we all know what is acceptable, what is within the limits,” the Red Bull driver added. “I mean, I know the drivers, especially like Fernando, he always does these kinds of tricks, let’s put it this way, always within the limits. I think Fernando is a very aggressive driver. But always within limits. I had some great fights with him. He is one of the drivers I trust the most.’

Opinions are divided about Alonso’s time penalty

Pérez was far from the only driver who expressed his surprise at the way the stewards punished the Alonso incident. McLaren’s Lando Norris said earlier on Thursday that the Spaniard’s driving behavior was “strange”, but “not that it came close to a braking test.” Charles Leclerc, on the other hand, as reported by the Italian branch of Motorsport.com, felt that ‘what Fernando did in Australia was a bit too much, and he should indeed have been punished. But I think there is something to look at when we talk about the penalty criteria, there are too many variables.”

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