Pérez feels podium chance was missed
18 September 2017 – Force India's Sergio Pérez believes a podium opportunity slipped out of reach during the Singapore Grand Prix, before going on to collect fifth position.
Pérez, who started on Wets, vaulted from 12th to fourth on a chaotic slippery opening lap, but had to pit for Intermediates as conditions improved.
Pérez made his stop during the Safety Car phase caused by Daniil Kvyat crashing at Turn 7, but fell behind Valtteri Bottas and Carlos Sainz Jr., who stayed out on used Intermediates.
Pérez challenged Sainz Jr. but was unable to pass, though ultimately moved into fifth spot when Renault's Nico Hülkenberg slipped back due to an oil leak.
"I'm really pleased to come away from such a challenging race with fifth place," said Pérez.
"So many things happened during the race, especially on lap one when it was so difficult to see anything because of the spray.
"At the same time, I'm a little disappointed that we missed out on a podium because I think the second Safety Car period didn't help our strategy.
"We started the race on the Full Wet tyres, but we had to switch early to the Intermediate tyres under the Safety Car and I lost valuable track position."
Force India team-mate Esteban Ocon rounded out the top 10, having turned 21 on race day, but was left frustrated by his lack of pace in wet conditions.
"I am not happy to come away with just 10th place, but at least we're leaving behind a very difficult weekend – it's not the best way to celebrate my birthday," he said.
"I made a very good start, but I struggled on both the Wet tyres and the Intermediates.
"This wasn't the case in Monza, where I was much more comfortable in the rain, but something wasn't working and I don't know why.
"This dragged me behind some slower cars. After the track had dried, I had good pace but I just couldn't overtake the cars I was chasing."
Pérez's fifth place enabled him to draw level with Max Verstappen in the standings on 68 points, with Ocon one position back, having scored 56.