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F1: Sergio Perez excited to start new season at Sahara Force India

After a season of unexpected struggle at McLaren, Mexican race car driver Sergio Perez enters a new chapter in his Formula 1 career this year, lining up at Sahara Force India.

Despite the lack of results he faced at McLaren in 2013, Perez is disappointed, but not unhappy.

“I don't regret anything: McLaren is a great team and I will always respect them. Unfortunately, for various reasons, the season did not go as expected and we ended up without a podium. The situation I am in now is different, but it's also exciting,” said Perez to Formula1.com.

McLaren boss, Martin Whitmarsh played a major role in finding Perez a new home in Sahara Force India.

“When it was confirmed that I was leaving McLaren, Sahara Force India was always my first option. It is a very good team and in the same way as me, it is hungry for success,” Perez said in the interview.

F1 Sergio Perez Dr Vijay Mallya Sahara Force India F1 Team
Sergio Perez and Dr Vijay Mallya. (Photo: Sahara Force India F1 Team)

“The discussions with Sahara Force India started around the time of the race in Austin. I attended a couple of meetings and held several telephone conferences before everything came to a positive agreement. The official announcement that I was going to race for Force India then came on December 10 at the Mexican Embassy in London with Vijay Mallya. It was a quite emotional moment,” he added.

The Mexican strongly believes in the potential of Vijay Mallya’s team.

“It is a team that has constantly progressed - and a lot recently when they finished sixth in the constructors’ championship - so I think this is a great opportunity for me. I feel confident that together with Sahara Force India we can do a good job over the winter and start the season in good shape. The team did that last year and they have been focused on the 2014 car for a long time. These are all positives,” he said.

Perez will have a new teammate to work with in 2014, German Nico Hulkenberg.

“Nico is a very competitive and experienced driver. I hope to learn as much from him as I can and I'm definitely looking forward to racing next to him,” Perez explained.

“I hope to learn as much from Nico as I expect him to learn from me, so eventually we will embark on a steep, two-way learning curve - hopefully with eyebrow raising results! I think I'm a better driver after the year with McLaren, and being strong in every area is - and always will be - my focus,” Perez concluded.