Did Perez deliberately crash into Sirotkin?

Monday, 17 september 2018, 07:49 , by Matthew Scott

FIA race director Charlie Whiting dismissed the notion that Sergio Perez intended to drive his Force India into the Williams of Sergey Sirotkin after the pair's fractious battle ended with carbon fibre scattered on the Marina Bay Circuit during the Singapore Grand Prix.

After spending several laps behind the Russian in a battle for 13th place, Perez grew frustrated with what he believed to be unfair tactics from the Russian, who he accused of braking too heavily into corners.

The spotlight was soon back on Perez, however, when - after passing the Russian into turn 17 – he bizarrely speared into the Williams' sidepod to earn a drive-through penalty.

Perez, who finished a disappointing 16th from seventh on the grid, also drove team-mate Esteban Ocon into the wall on lap one, prompting Force India to threaten team orders in future races, but Whiting did not see reason to investigate Perez's motives any further.

"I haven't spoken to him, nor have the stewards as far as I'm aware," said Whiting. "But it's hard to believe a driver would intend to hit a [rival] car.

"He'd been trying hard to get past Sirotkin, and he looked a little bit frustrated, and I just think he misjudged how far in front he was in front of him.

"You saw how closely they were racing all the way through [turns] 14, 15, 16, 17, and I think he just misjudged it."

The incident drew comparison with Sebastian Vettel banging wheels with Lewis Hamilton under the safety car at last year's Azerbaijan Grand Prix, for which the Ferrari man was only handed an in-race time penalty.

"The safety car was out in Baku," Whiting said. "You can say it was, I wouldn't say safer, but less likely to cause an accident than when at racing speeds. 

"But that's a decision that the stewards took, and presumably they took that into account."

VIDEO: Perez smashes into Sirotkin

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Comments (15)

  • Steve Gould
    How did the stewards not even " investigate after the race" it seems like a very quick rush to judgement to say just a drive through . Vettels deliberate crash into Hamilton last year , while equally stupid was at least at a lot lower speed. Perez has been in formula one long enough to realise that cars dont magically disappear when you get your nose just in front
  • Francesco Macchiarella
    What pisses me off is that the FIA aren't consistent with penalties. Perez only got a drive thru even though he complete ruined the race for sirotkin. But when vettel did the same thing with Hamilton in Baku. He got a 10 second stop and go and was given 3 point I believe on his licence. The FIA need a lesson on being consistent.
  • Markus Bimmer
    I really don't understand why you need to move to the left on that occasion. Maybe blokcing the inner line from Sirotkin? Well, could be, but that's not very clever imo.
  • Leaston Subramany
    But surely you can anticipate a car will be on the side of you in a race so it's not only the mirrors that he is not using but also his brain
  • Robert Jinx Joiner
    Yes he did and twice in the same race . Don't forget he took his team mate out as well . He's just showed himself to be a complete knob.
  • Karl Manning
    The second incident looked delibrate due to the nature of how he did turn into the williams, was rather forceful sharp turn
  • John Saville
    I don't think Perez uses his mirrors. As proven with his multiple contacts with Ocon and the Sirotkin
  • Shiva Bhardwaj
    Perez has reached level of maldando in a grand prix itself
  • Karl Manning
    Perez driving yesterday was appalling, should of got the black flag
  • Mark Harris
    Need to investigate further, the fia need the telemetry
  • Rene Ferre
  • Jon Thompson
    CertInly looked like he did.
  • Kayleigh Johns
    Is the Pope Catholic

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