Sergio Perez has insisted he’s happy at Force India, despite being linked with a move to McLaren earlier this year.
Although the now-Lawrence Stroll owned team haven’t officially announced their driver lineup for 2019, the Mexican has seemingly confirmed he’ll be there for the foreseeable future.
The 28-year-old told Autosport his talks with McLaren were never that serious as he had already decided his future when he spoke to the team. He was linked with the drive along with Esteban Ocon, Stoffel Vandoorne and Lando Norris, with the latter eventually being confirmed as Carlos Sainz’s teammate for 2019. He added that he’s happy with his plans for next season, and that Force India is an “attractive place” for drivers not in a Mercedes or Ferrari seat. Perez also predicted that the team will be a good option for the next few years.
Perez is expected to lineup next to current Williams driver Lance Stroll next year after his father bought the team. Stroll’s arrival will mean Ocon leaves the team after two seasons, and will likely find himself without a spot on the grid next season. Perez played a big role in ensuring Stroll could purchase the team by filing to put the team in administration, meaning other debtors couldn’t file a winding up order. The move allowed administrators to find a new buyer for the team within weeks of Perez’s paperwork being filed.
2019 would be Perez’s sixth season with Force India, who will have a new name for next year. He joined the outfit for 2014 after a disappointed season with McLaren, having previously spent two years at McLaren. Five of Perez’s eight Formula 1 podiums have come during his stint with the team, including most recently at this year’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix. He’s finished in the top 10 in the drivers’ standings in every season with the team, including seventh in the last two years.