Lewis Hamilton sees the funny side of Sergio Perez’s Mexico Grand Prix crash

Michelle Foster
Red Bull Sergio Perez is airborne after hitting Charles Leclerc at Turn 1.

Sergio Perez crashed out of the Mexican Grand Prix at Turn 1.

Lewis Hamilton had a chuckle as he declared Sergio Perez was “me in Qatar” as he watched replays of the Red Bull driver’s Turn 1 crash at the Mexican Grand Prix.

Perez’s home race at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez came to an early conclusion when the Red Bull driver’s audacious move into Turn 1 ended in tears.

Starting fifth on the grid, he gained a slipstream from the cars ahead and surged ahead of Daniel Ricciardo and Carlos Sainz before trying to pass Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen together into Turn 1.

Lewis Hamilton: Oh s*** he’s me in Qatar!

But three into one doesn’t often go and on Sunday it was Perez who paid the price as he also turned in too sharply and hit the Ferrari.

While Leclerc’s SF-23 sustained front wing damage, Perez’s RB19 was terminal with the Mexican driver pulling into the pits with his race over.

His teammate Verstappen went on to take the win, his 16th of the season, crossing the line ahead of Hamilton and Leclerc with the trio discussing Perez’s shunt in the cooldown room as replays were shown.

Hamilton seeing Perez’s crash: “Was he out?”

Verstappen: “Yes.”

Leclerc: “I don’t know how I finished the race.”

Hamilton: “Where’s he going? Oh s*** he’s me in Qatar! Haha!”

But giving Perez the benefit of the doubt, the Mercedes driver added: “It’s hard to see sometimes.”

Two races prior in Qatar Hamilton made a similar mistake as he tried to pass George Russell into Turn 1 but misjudged it and instead turned in on his teammate. Like Perez, Hamilton was the one to pay the price.

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Although Perez was visibly gutted in the immediate aftermath, the 33-year-old later conceded it was a racing incident with no one to blame.

“I wasn’t expecting Charles, he was in the middle, and he had less room to manoeuvre and to brake as late as I or Max did,” he told Sky F1.

“I think simply there was no room for three cars. It was a total racing incident.

“In hindsight, I should have…I don’t know…I shouldn’t say that but in hindsight, I should back out and go home.”

Perez DNF coupled with Hamilton’s runner-up result and fastest lap point means the Mexican driver’s lead in the Drivers’ standings is down to 20 points with three races remaining.

Read next: Mexican Grand Prix conclusions: Sergio Perez’s Day of the Dead nightmare