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Perez 'sure' McLaren will win in 2013

ESPN Staff
May 24, 2013 « Pirelli warns it could quit Formula One | Ricciardo concerned by Toro Rosso pace »
Sergio Perez: "The target for us is to win a race or a couple of races" © Sutton Images
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Sergio Perez is sure McLaren will win races this season despite the team's lacklustre performances at the first five races.

McLaren's best result so far this year was Jenson Button's fifth-place finish in China, while Perez's highest finishing position was sixth at the Bahrain Grand Prix. At the last round in Barcelona the team brought a major upgrade to the car but it did not appear to close the gap to the front of the grid and there are few signs that will change this weekend in Monaco.

Nevertheless, Perez is confident McLaren's prospects will start to look better soon.

"The target for us is to win a race or a couple of races," he said. "We know that at the moment there is no way we can think about that but we have to do our best and it is very encouraging for myself to see how hard everybody is pushing back home. No one in the team is giving up even though we are not in the position that we would like to be in, knowing we can fight for race victories.

"It's not easy, especially for a winning team like we are, and it's not easy for myself coming into a new team that is in such a difficult position. But I have to say I am very proud of my whole team and I am sure that we will win races this year."

Perez said it would take a couple of races to start to turn the team around and thinks a podium at the British Grand Prix would be a good target.

"It's going to take us a couple of races more," he said. "In Barcelona we were massively far away, which was very disappointing. You never know but I expect a couple of races to turn everything around. But it's difficult to tell you that we are going to be in the podium for the British Grand Prix because at the moment it looks like we are very far away. But McLaren is a great team and its working flat out. If we can be on the podium at the British Grand Prix we can be happy with the performance and then we can look to win races after that."

However, sporting director Sam Michael said it was important not to set expectations too high.

"It's great that he's optimistic but we've still got an awful lot of work to do," he said. "How long it takes us to get there, I can't really predict. We are a second off the pace here [in Monaco] and it doesn't seem that different to Barcelona, maybe we are a bit closer."