Sergio Perez and Russell in agreement as F1 praised for popular new change

Sergio Perez and George Russell have both praised the organisers of the Mexican Grand Prix after the decision was taken to reduce the number of admissions to the F1 paddock for the 2023 event.

The Mexican GP is always one of the most anticipated events on the F1 calendar thanks to the passion of the home crowd, but that love for the sport has often led to one of the most hectic paddocks of the season with drivers struggling to make their way past swathes of adoring fans to get to team meetings and media duties.

Therefore, the decision was made this year to have a quieter paddock. This is something that many drivers have been calling for at different races throughout the season with Alpine’s Pierre Gasly particularly vocal about the increasing difficulty drivers are facing throughout race weekends. 

Perez was asked about the changes to the paddock ahead of Friday’s running at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, replying: “I think we’ve got to appreciate, obviously, the Mexican fans are really enthusiastic.

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“But at the same time, we have to make sure that the drivers are comfortably going around the paddock, and I think that that should be a nice balance.

And I just want everyone to have a great time in my country and I think that’s something that went over the limit last year, that hopefully this year can be improved. Because overall it’s in my opinion the best reception for all the drivers in the world.” 

This hasn’t been the first security-related issue surrounding the Mexican GP this weekend with Red Bull driver Max Verstappen assigned personal bodyguards following a hostile reception from Perez’s passionate fans at the United States GP last time out.

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These opinions were backed up by Mercedes’ Russell, who insisted that he loves to see as many fans as possible in the paddock but admitted that changes were probably needed. “I think for me, the more the merrier is great,” the 25-year-old said.

“But at the end of the day, we’re all here to do a job, and last year, we were struggling just to get from our engineers’ office to the garage without people jumping on us and sticking cameras right in our faces.

“It was a bit of a strange environment. So yeah, I’m happy for the paddock to be packed as long as we’ve all got a sensible way through to get to where we’ve got to be.”

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