If you’ve been following Formula One these past few years, you have undoubtedly realized that there are now two clear tiers of competitors on the grid.
You have the likes of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull in front, followed by pretty much everybody else. You could break it down even further and add more tiers, but then again, that wouldn’t make much sense, as the top teams fighting for wins and the championship, and the midfielders and backmarkers is, and has been for many years, a nice, uncomplicated way to describe their status.
Force India’s Sergio Perez is one of the drivers caught on the outside looking in at the three best teams in Formula One, and is by no means a fan of letting things remain the way they are, especially when other drivers are more than happy to just fight for the best finishing spot behind them.
“You cannot compete. The last four or five years it was simply two categories in Formula 1. I’ve never heard before, that people were talking about ‘yeah, I won the race’, when you are the best of the rest, or ‘I’m leading the championship’ if you are the best of the rest.”
“That shouldn’t be the way. That is damaging the sport a lot,” said the Mexican driver in an interview with Autosport.
Perez’s comments follow those of Haas F1 driver Kevin Magnussen, who recently admitted to having created a ‘Class B’ title in his head, seen as how the midfield cannot fight against the top three teams.
Since the start of the 2016 F1 season, only five times has a non-Mercedes/Ferrari/Red Bull driver finished on the podium, which means that the rest really don’t stand a chance against those three.
Currently, the ‘Class B’ title fight has Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg, who has beaten out all of his second-tier rivals on four occasions this year, as the favorite.
“As a driver, even though you’re frustrated and disappointed, it is the way it is. Your ambition is each time you know to still get the best out of yourself, the car, beat your teammate. You go for the next best thing,” said Hulkenberg.
Perez, on the other hand, still has hopes for the future of the sport.
“I really hope for the benefit of the sport that in 2021 you have five teams fighting for victories every race. That will be a dream come true. As a fan, I’d like to see that.”