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McLaren learning from Melbourne - Perez

ESPN Staff
March 20, 2013 « Bianchi wants to build on strong debut | Ferrari has 'a great basis' to build on - Domenicali »
Sergio Perez: "It's shown us exactly what we need to do to close down the gap to the leaders" © Sutton Images
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Sergio Perez says the Australian Grand Prix has shown McLaren what is required to close the gap to the front-runners this season.

McLaren showed an alarming lack of pace with its MP4-28 as Perez failed to reach Q3 and finished 11th while Jenson Button managed to salvage two points in ninth place. While Perez admits there will be no quick fix, he says getting both cars through a race weekend has highlighted to McLaren where it needs to improve.

"Last weekend's race was a difficult one for everybody on the team, but it's shown us exactly what we need to do to close down the gap to the leaders," Perez said. "This weekend in Malaysia will be about trying to maximise the package we have while knowing that it's not going to be enough to allow us to fight for overall victory.

"Still, we know what we have to do - and I know that everybody within the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team will be working incredibly hard to bring performance to the car. That may not happen in Malaysia, as it's so soon after the Australian Grand Prix, but we know it'll start coming soon."

Perez added his hopes for a repeat shock result this weekend having finished second for Sauber in Malaysia last year.

"For me, Sepang holds many happy memories - I had one of the best races of my career there last year where I was able to push Fernando for victory until the closing laps. It's a fantastic circuit, really fast and demanding. It would be great to pull off another unexpected result for the team this year."