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Sergio Pérez has revealed that Ferrari never displayed any keen interest in his services for the 2013 Formula 1 season. The Mexican, who is still a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy (FDA), has now signed for McLaren as Lewis Hamilton switches to Mercedes.
Although Pérez – GP2 runner-up to Pastor Maldonado in 2010 – has impressed with Sauber, having picked up three podium finishes so far this season, Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo has said that the 22-year-old is not yet experienced enough.
“It was never clear with them, whether they actually wanted me or not,” Pérez explained at Suzuka on Thursday. “It was difficult for them to make a decision and I think they’re happy with Felipe (Massa) – he is a good driver who has proven what he can do. I am not a guarantee like Felipe which is why I was never an option and why the opportunity never came. So I am thankful that the team (McLaren) has given me this opportunity and now I want to leave Sauber on a high.”
He went on to explain why he has stayed quiet over recent weeks.
“I didn’t want to give away too much information about my opportunities and options,” Pérez continued frankly. “There would have been too many questions about it. I know the shoes of Lewis (Hamilton) are big ones to fill and I’ll just work as hard as possible to give it my best and win the championship with this great team. There’s no other option with McLaren – if you have a car you can win with, you have to win every race.”
Pérez is expected to be replaced at Sauber by F1 returnee Jaime Alguersuari.
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