Perez plays down McLaren speculation

Aug.31 (GMM) Sergio Perez has played down speculation linking him with McLaren for 2019.

Earlier, it seemed clear that the Mexican, having participated in the legal moves that triggered the Lawrence Stroll takeover, was definitely staying at Force India.

But now, rumours are linking him with becoming Carlos Sainz’s teammate at McLaren next year.

Asked at Monza if his future is set for 2019, Perez answered: “Yes.”

“It’s a timing issue for the team. But where I’ll be, I know. They will make the announcement when and where they wish to do it.”

He would not say directly if he was referring to Racing Point Force India, but he did spoke openly about the prospect of being Lance Stroll’s teammate.

And Perez also indicated that the Stroll takeover is good news, as the Silverstone based team “has enormous potential and now a better budget”.

So when asked if he would accept an offer to return to McLaren, where he raced in 2013, Perez answered: “If I had guarantees that I could be competitive, and there was a great project behind everything, then why not?

“But I would have to know the details of their plans better, to understand the situation of the team.”

As for Force India and its future, the 28-year-old said: “There is no doubt that the best of this team is coming.

“The goal is to be a competitive team in the coming seasons and I think it is possible to even be among the top three,” Perez added.

He said Force India’s designers and engineers thrive because they don’t feel “a hand tightening around their necks if they get something wrong”.

“That is an important difference between us and some teams like Toyota, McLaren, Renault,” said Perez.

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