Perez: My ability earned me eight F1 podiums not the cars

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Sergio Perez says his own skills earned him eight Formula 1 podiums rather than the cars he was driving.

The Mexican has established himself as one of the top midfield drivers during his career, making his mark in 2012 with three podiums for Sauber, including what should have been a victory in Malaysia.

Those performances saw McLaren take him on as Lewis Hamilton's successor in 2013, however, his big move would only last one season and Perez has found himself at Force India/Racing Point ever since.

“The 2012 [Sauber] was a good race car. I think we did great things with that car in a couple of races – it was very impressive what that car could do, but to be honest, in all my nine years, I've never had a car capable of achieving a podium," he told

“Maybe a couple of them, but not all of them. You always aim to have the best possible car on the grid, and unfortunately, I haven't had that yet.”

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Perez's main strength has always been looking after the rear tyres, something that was a big asset during Pirelli's high-degradation era.

“My racecraft is the strongest point I have,” he continued.

“Figuring out a race, and whenever there is an opportunity, making sure that the strategy [works out]. I mean, there is so much as a racing driver you can do with the strategy.

“But I remember a couple of my podiums came thanks to me managing a bit the strategy and deciding when to pit, when not to pit, so it's important.

“That racecraft and making sure that you always deliver at your best, I think it's what I've been able to do in the last couple of years, very consistent, delivering a lot of points.”

No more so is that true that in Baku, with Perez the only driver to have scored two top-three results before Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas joined him this year.