‘Then the collision’ – The photographer injured in Sergio Perez’s crash speaks out

Michelle Foster
The scene as Kevin Magnussen sends Sergio Perez into a crash at the 2024 Monaco Grand Prix.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull, crashes in Monaco.

Andrea Bruno Diodato, the photographer injured when Sergio Perez and Kevin Magnussen crashed in Monaco, says he won’t “accuse” the Haas driver as that was probably his “only glimmer of opportunity” in Monaco.

Magnussen and Perez, as well as Nico Hulkenberg, saw their Monaco GP hopes obliterated on the very first lap of the Grand Prix when Magnussen tried to power past Perez around the outside only to collide with the Red Bull driver as he took the racing line.

Andrea Bruno Diodato was not seriously injured in the Sergio Perez crash

It was a spectacular crash as Perez lost all four corners of his RB20 and Magnussen the front end of his Haas while a glancing, but hefty blow, also put his team-mate Nico Hulkenberg out of the race.

With debris spewed, never mind strewn, across the track, the race was red-flagged as marshals cleared up the carbon fibre debris.

However, it later emerged that while Perez’s RB20 was shedding bodywork against the barriers it injured one photographer standing on the side of the track by the Beau Rivage corner, but behind fencing.

That photographer, Andrea Bruno Diodato, was taken to the track’s medical centre but soon released.

He told Sky Italia: “I’m fine and there were no serious consequences for anyone. And this also explains that there isn’t a safety problem on that circuit. And I don’t even feel like accusing the Haas driver, as an enthusiast I can understand that.”

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“My job sometimes teaches us to listen even before seeing certain situations,” he added. “And so in those moments, the uniform noise as the cars passed was as if it had stopped for a moment and I understood that something was about to happen. Then the collision.

“There were about ten of us, now I only have a bruise after the impact with a fragment of the ‘ala Red Bull. It went well, those who suffered the most damage may have thrown themselves to the ground to take cover.

“If I put myself in the driver’s shoes, I must say that in a certain sense, I understand Magnussen.

“In a race where it is very difficult to overtake, perhaps in that situation, he saw the only glimmer of opportunity to succeed. I don’t feel like accusing or condemning him.”

But as images of photographers scrambling for their safety did the rounds, he was asked if he was ever afraid at those moments.

“No, no fear,” he said.

“In Monaco there is no safety problem. I know that circuit well and if there were no serious consequences after the impact it is also because the guardrails are very solid, as are the posts in the asphalt.

“I think that track offers many more certainties when compared to others and other situations. I’m thinking for example of the accident involving Zhou (with Albon) at Silverstone in 2022.

“Well, that’s a dynamic, I certainly wouldn’t want to find myself in Monaco, maybe the show isn’t exciting on the track, but the safety standards are high. And in any case we are all aware that there is a risk in doing this job.”

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