Sergio Perez has called winning the Monaco Grand Prix a "dream come true" after his triumph from third on the grid to take the top step.
Perez put in an assured and calculated drive in tricky conditions on Sunday, which meant only 66 laps could be completed on the streets of Monte Carlo after a late start, and further delays following a big crash for Mick Schumacher.
Perez claimed only his third race victory from 220 starts. Admittedly for the Mexican driver, the prestige of taking the race victory at Monaco is different to his other two wins, in Sakhir and Azerbaijan.
"Well, certainly very high up there, winning Monaco, it's a dream come true as a driver," Perez told a news conference.
"When you come into Formula One and when you come to Monaco, when you drive it for the first time, you always dream about one day winning the race or racing here. So it's just incredible.
"It's such a big day for myself. I was driving with Pedro Rodriguez's helmet today, and I'm sure that there he will be super proud of what we have achieved in this sport."
Monday mood... pic.twitter.com/tpvTH4vUnl— Formula 1 (@F1) May 30, 2022
Perez pitted from fourth place for a set of intermediates before both Charles Leclerc and team-mate Max Verstappen came in, putting him in position to take the race lead as the track dried, albeit with the help of poorly executed Ferrari strategy.
He was eventually able to hold off a late charge from Carlos Sainz, becoming the first Mexican driver to win in Monaco.
With only six drivers from Mexico to ever drive in Formula One, Perez did not lose perspective on the gravity of such an achievement.
"Certainly, in terms of history of the sport, I'm a big fan of my sport," he said. "So, certainly knowing what it means to win a race like this. I mean, they're all very important, but certainly this is very special. And it goes very, very high on the list for my country.
"I certainly feel like at the moment, I'm the only Mexican – or even Latin American – driver on the grid. So, it just shows how difficult it is for us - not saying that for European drivers it's easy, but it just shows how difficult it is for us to make it into the sport and to have a successful career. It is quite hard, but I have to say I'm extremely proud of it."