June 23, 2024

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Formula 1: Monaco pays homage to Chico Perez

Formula 1: Monaco pays homage to Chico Perez

Checo Pérez celebrates with his Red Bull team winning the Monaco Grand Prix, on May 29, 2022.Clive Rose (Getty Images)

Winning the Monaco Grand Prix lifts the Maracana World Cup. It is the mother of victories to win the race on the winding Monte Carlo circuit, a narrow street circuit reserved only for the legends of Formula 1. Only 36 drivers have won since 1950, including Chico Perez. The victory he achieved in 2022 was the high point of his career.

You have to come back a year. In May, Monte Carlo once again celebrated the most prestigious Formula 1 weekend. Perez entered the race with three podium finishes in Australia (2), Imola (2) and Spain (2). Things were going well for the Mexican and the plan was this: to continue fighting for any victory with the permission of Max Verstappen, the undisputed leader. There was some pressure on the Mexican driver due to his contract expiring and there were doubts about his renewal despite him being Verstappen’s peaceful partner, helping him win the title in 2021 and reach the podium.

Things were going well for the Mexican who was only behind Leclerc in the first free tests, then set the third best time and in the last tests had the best performance. The challenge in Monaco is that the cars are very close to the crash barriers, so there is no year a person is collision-free. Checo Pérez, in qualifying, lost control of his Red Bull before entering the tunnel of the circuit when he was trying to put his best foot forward. The commissioners raised the red flag and everything was on hold. So column It was won by Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, followed by Carlos Sainz and finally the Mexican. A furious Verstappen lashed out at not having a chance to fight for the lead.

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It flooded that Sunday morning. The start was delayed due to rain. The race started very carefully, with few incidents and no lead change. It looked like it was going to be a dull, soulless race until Ferrari tidy up the mayhem. The Italian team made the mistake of calling their drivers to change tyres. That opened up the opportunity for Checo Pérez to take the lead, retread his tyres, and take on the onslaught of a furious Carlos Sainz who was pressing. Haas’ Mick Schumacher hit the track, causing the race to be abandoned. To determine the winner, the commissioners decided to give 30 minutes of running to the bottom. Perez crossed the finish line as the winner and the F1 world gave him the utmost respect for his resilience under pressure and driving with precision.

Perez collapsed on the platform when he heard the Mexican anthem. In 2016, when he was still racing with Force India, he also stepped up to celebrate, but at that time he was running third. In Monaco, Perez had the right to celebrate in the Red Bull pool and swim during the festivities, which is tradition for the Energy Drinks team. “As a driver you dream of winning here. After a home race, there is nothing more special than Monaco. [Tuve que lidiar] With the tires deteriorating, no mistakes being made and Carlos being pushed away [Sainz] It wasn’t easy. “It’s a great day for me and my country,” he said at the time.

Checo Pérez with Bad Bunny, this Thursday at the Monaco Grand Prix. AFP7 via Europa Press (AFP7 via Europa Press)

Perez returned to Monaco as the man to watch. Red Bull gave him a superstar role in front of the media by inviting singer Bad Bunny to his garage to present his helmet. The Puerto Rican, who has already met the Mexican in Miami, has his own favorite driver. “Monaco is one of those places where if you make a mistake you end up against a wall. There is no margin for error. Sunday can be very boring for the fans, but not for the driver himself,” commented the Mexican on Thursday. “It’s not our strongest circuit, But we’ll see. “Anything can happen here,” he added.

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Brazilian Ayrton Senna dominated the streets of the stately emirate to win it six times. The title was won by the legendary Argentine Juan Manuel Fangio (twice), his compatriot Carlos Reutemann and the Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya. Perez still has the fuel to turn around triumphantly on the streets of Monaco.

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