Martin Whitmarsh maintains Sergio Perez and Jenson Button will have “equal treatment” this season despite it being Perez’s first at McLaren…
Martin Whitmarsh maintains Sergio Perez and Jenson Button will have “equal treatment” this season despite it being the Mexican’s first at McLaren
Perez has joined McLaren after a successful 2012 campaign with Sauber in which the 22-year-old secured three podium finishes on his way to tenth in the Championship.
Unveiled to the world as a McLaren driver on Wednesday, Perez had his first official walk-about at the Woking factory where he spoke of his desire to not only beat his new team-mate Button but also to win his first Drivers’ Championship title.
“When you come to McLaren, this [winning the title] must be your target, otherwise you shouldn’t join McLaren,” said Perez. “Everybody here is working for that goal and I’m coming here to do the same.”
The McLaren driver’s goal has been given a boost by Whitmarsh’s confirmation that Perez will receive the same treatment as Button despite the latter having spent more years with McLaren than Perez has even had in Formula One.
“People like to have that debate,” Whitmarsh told Sky Sports News.
“The fact is Jenson has got the advantage in terms of knowing the team, he has the experience and he is a World Champion.
“Jenson will be very generous with his time and his share his opinions, but when he pulls out of the garage, Jenson will want to beat Sergio and Sergio will want to beat Jenson.
“That is the mentality in our team. They will have equal treatment. I think that competition in the team is good.”
As for his new signing, Whitmarsh concedes that only time will tell if in Perez McLaren will have another World Champion on the books.
“I am happy at this stage and I am excited as we are about to run the cars. He is very young, very talented and that is exciting.
“We have had the good fortune to bring young drivers through like Lewis Hamilton and Mika Hakkinen and turn them into World Champions.
“We don’t know if that is going to happen, there is a lot of pressure on Sergio to deliver in this team, but he has impressed me so far.”