Sergio Perez has defended Max Verstappen after the Dutchman received criticism in the wake of the Red Bull cost cap controversy.
After it was found that the team breached the budget cap, critics argued that it gave Verstappen an unfair advantage in 2021.
But Perez has called them out, saying that it is “completely unfair” to say that the Dutchman won his first championship as a result of the overspend.
“If you look at the facts, Max didn’t win the championship because of that,” he told The Telegraph. “We didn’t get any performance benefit from it.”
“Teams that want to take advantage of this by putting Red Bull in a bad light are just unfair. It shows that they are bad losers.”
Perez understands Red Bull’s boycott of Sky
Following remarks from Sky Sports pundit Ted Kravitz about the nature in which Verstappen has won his two titles, the Dutchman elected to snub the broadcaster over the Mexican Grand Prix weekend.
This was later resolved after a negotiation between Red Bull and Sky was reached, with Formula 1 Management acting as a mediator.
Perez said he supported the boycott and believes the team plays a role in educating people on social media.
“We all have to be careful what we say, both the drivers and the media. The way we present the news can look bad or normal. I think we play a part in bringing something ‘less intense’.
“Social media is becoming increasingly toxic and I don’t think it’s appropriate for them [Sky Sports] to put Max and Red Bull in a bad light.”
The Mexican also calls out the booing for competitors, often targeted at drivers who dominate for a period of time.
“I don’t understand where it comes from,” he said, when talking about the booing at Hamilton during the Mexico GP podium. “Lewis is one of the most popular drivers.”
“It’s not the way Mexicans should react. It’s not nice to see. This is a great sport, the standards and values are good and booing at a driver is disrespectful.”