Belief in Racing Point's ambition behind 2022 commitment - Sergio Perez

Racing Point driver Sergio Perez

Sergio Perez has outlined that his belief in Racing Point's long-term potential and prospects was behind his decision to commit to the Formula 1 team until 2022.

Perez has been with Racing Point – under its Force India guise – since 2014, and has typically agreed one-year extensions in conjunction with his personal sponsors.

Perez had been expected to stay at the team for 2020 but instead has committed for a further three years, tying him to Racing Point through 2022.

Racing Point has enjoyed greater financial backing in the wake of Lawrence Stroll’s mid-2018 takeover, while it has switched to using Mercedes’ wind tunnel, and is in the early stages of a substantial factory expansion.

“I see this team has a big potential,” said Perez. “I really believe in the plans that we have for the coming years.

“I think this year as expected has been a bit of a transition. I think definitely it’s a massive opportunity for me to grow together for the future and obviously there is a big change in rules coming up so hopefully this team can be in place for that.

“I think what the team is doing back home, everyone, how hard they’re pushing, and the investment is a massive opportunity.

“And more to it I wanted a project that motivated me, and it’s what I have here. I see a good future. Only time will tell if it’s right or not but I’m optimistic for it.”

Perez has nonetheless indicated that he would be free to leave should one of Formula 1’s front-running teams want his services for 2021 or 2022.

“I know that there might be some movement around,” he said. “But I think I’ve been so long in this team that if a big opportunity came up definitely the team will be happy to consider it.

“That for me is not a concern. It’s more to work together for the next three years and we have big targets to achieve.

“[And] I am realistic. there’s no point right now for me to say that I’m going to have a chance with Mercedes or Ferrari for next year as… there were years that I was close. It hasn’t been for the last years.

“So I have an opportunity with a team I can grow with, so why not?

“You see these days that it’s difficult for people to find a team where they feel comfortable, not just with the racing side, but the project the team has, that was important for me.

“I’m not saying the opportunity with a top team will not happen anymore as you never know what will happen in Formula 1, but I’m just pleased I have a long-term deal with a team that has a big future ahead.”