Red Bull’s Sergio Perez has been left feeling ‘hurt’ after the timing of the safety car at the Saudi Arabian GP. The Mexican had stormed to a stunning pole position for the race, which was the first in his career.

Sergio Perez led for the full opening 14 laps at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix on Sunday. However, the Red Bull driver saw his race get wrecked after Nicholas Latifi crashed just one lap after his pitstop. After Latifi’s crash, a Virtual Safety Car was called, and then the full Safety Car.

Image Credits – Planet F1

This allowed the likes of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Perez’s teammate, Max Verstappen, the opportunity for a cheap pitstop under the safety car. The safety car then pushed ‘Checo’ to third place in the race.

However, he was instructed to allow Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz to pass him as well at the safety car restart having been judged to have passed the Spaniard when Sainz exited the pitlane. Perez then found himself in fourth place and eventually finished the race in P4.

This came as a major heartbreak for Perez, who was eyeing up his first win of the season after a sensational qualifying run last weekend. It was the first time that Checo started from pole position in his F1 career, on his 215th attempt.

Perez opens up on the disastrous timing of Safety Car

While speaking to GP Blog, Perez stated that he was unlucky with the timing of the Safety Car. Checo explained, “It’s a bit painful in the car but this is racing. Going into the race, especially this kind of race as these things can happen, a bit of bad luck today,”

Perez added that the team informed him to allow Sainz to make the pass on him when the Ferrari got out of the pits, “The team told me to give it back, so I gave it back straight after the safety car. They had more information; inside the car, you don’t know exactly where you are for the safety car line. In that regard, I felt it was the right thing to do.”

Despite Perez finishing P4, Red Bull did manage to get the win in Saudi Arabia as Max Verstappen clinched victory after a late tussle with Charles Leclerc.

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