Perez: I am fully aware of the steep slope ahead of me 31 January, 2013 Sergio Perez is the new boy at McLaren Sergio Perez has arrived! After two seasons with perennial mid-fielders Sauber, the 23 year old Mexican is now a driver for McLaren – one of the most famous teams in motorsport. With the spotlight firmly on him, he spoke about the season ahead for which he feels better prepared than ever before. Sergio Perez 2013 helmet “For me, this is a great day. In fact, every day this year has been great: I’ve been working hard with my new team to get everything ready for the start of the 2013 season; it’s been an incredible journey to get to know this incredible organisation. “I’m incredibly proud to be a Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver. Seeing such famous cars brought to life today, and knowing that I’m driving for the team in it’s 50th anniversary year – that’s such a special feeling. “Of course, I am fully aware of the steep slope ahead of me: it has already been an intense couple of weeks, getting to grips with a new team, meeting my engineers and mechanics, learning new ways of working and, of course, learning all about a brand new car – something I’ll need to do with just six days of on-track testing. It’s a big challenge. “But it’s definitely going to be an exciting few weeks: although I’ve been racing in F1 for the past two seasons, every racing car is different and it always takes a little time to adjust. Firstly, I’ll need to understand the different characteristics of the car; secondly, I’ll learn how to best work with my engineers to make the car suit my personal driving style. It’s going to be an interesting and exciting journey. “But I’m more prepared than I’ve ever been for the start of a new season. I feel extremely fit, focused and refreshed – there’s still a lot to do, but my aims are to feel confident, comfortable and ready to race by the time I land in Australia in just a few weeks’ time.” (McLaren) Subbed by AJN. Tweet Related NewsHonda release F1 engine photo and slam delay reportsHonda-McLaren project already on the back foot?Button: Suzuka will be a tricky one for usSilly Season: Alonso to McLaren looks a done dealSilly Season: Alonso to McLaren looking likelyMcLaren: Red Bull sent coded messages to RicciardoMagnussen: It was the hardest point I’ve ever earnedMcLaren denies losing Johnnie Walker backingMcLaren: A disappointing race for the entire teamHonda plan Alonso charm offensive at Suzuka McLarenfan We shall see how well Checo fits in with the McLaren ethos. Butterfly Well, the repair bill on his side of the garage is going to be steep, that’s for sure. McHare I think he could be a dark horse this season. Remember his ability to make tyres last almost twice that of others will play straight into the new Pirelli ethos of marginal durability. In fact, together with Jens, the car design direction can be unified towards the non aggressive approach. Butterfly Well, you can make tires last and crawl around the track, sure. And judging by the Mexican’s qualy performance, I’d say that’s where the tire-saving comes from – speed trade-off.