Italian shoe manufacturer Andrea Sassetti had arrived in the F1 paddock with bags of lire and, having bought the Coloni team, fired drivers Caffi and Bertaggia, and re-named it Andrea Moda. He wanted Perry in the car but, as ever, there was a problem. He didn’t have an FIA Superlicence. After much ducking and diving he got the paperwork just in time for the Brazilian Grand Prix in April ’92 and was ready to join his old friends and rivals Johnny Herbert and Roberto Moreno on the grid. But… Here comes another punch in the guts.
Arriving in the Interagos paddock Perry was told that his new licence was invalid, an error in the paperwork. And the Andrea Moda wasn’t ready to race. There’d only been enough time to prep one car for his team mate Moreno who failed to qualify when the car broke down after two laps.
Perry’s season resumed, if you can describe it so, in Spain. The team was a shambles, the Judd-powered car was hopeless, but this was F1, his dream, and he was going to give it his best. Back then there were 32 cars entered for 26 places on the grid, so the Andrea Modas had to get through a pre-qualifying session on Friday mornings. In Barcelona the Judd V10 broke down as Perry was leaving the pit lane. At Imola he managed eight laps before the differential failed. Same in Monaco, just three laps this time, but Moreno did qualify which was some encouragement. On to Canada where, incredibly, the engines had been impounded against alleged debts owed by Mr Sassetti. Could it get any worse? It could.