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Perez makes passage to India

2013-12-13 08:08

PASSAGE TO INDIA: Sergio Perez has moved from McLaren to Force India on "a multi-year deal". Image: AFP

Stephen Wood

LONDON, England - Mexican Sergio Perez, 23, has signed a multi-year deal to race for the Force India Formula 1 team.

He said he wanted to forge a winning partnership with German Nico Hulkenberg and was hungry for success after a lean year with McLaren.

Team co-owner Vijay Mallya presented the Mexican at the ambassador's central London residence on Thursday (Dec 12).

'ONE OF STRONGEST'

Perez added: "After I left McLaren my best choice was to come to Force India because of the whole package. A very hungry team, very honest people and a great team mate... everything has really inspired me.

"I think we are one of the strongest driver line-ups on the grid."

The completion of Force India's 2014 line-up left Briton Paul di Resta and Germany Adrian Sutil looking for drives with only Sauber, Caterham and Marussia still open.

MAGNUSSEN MOVES IN

Sutil could move to Sauber; Resta's best bet could be the IndyCar series in America where his cousin Dario Franchitti has just retired after winning the Indy 500 three times, or a return to German Touring Cars.

Perez was replaced at McLaren by 21-year-old Danish rookie Kevin Magnussen but his passage to India was greased by strong financial backing from Mexican sponsors/.

Mallya, however, was adamant that money was not the determining factor. "We didn't choose either of our drivers because of any commercial backing. That's against my basic philosophy."

Perez said Mexican phone company Telmex, which has backed him throughout his career, and other Mexican sponsors would follow him.
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