Sergio Perez believes his collision with Lando Norris was “50/50” in terms of responsibility in Abu Dhabi, and was surprised to receive a five-second penalty.
The Red Bull driver finished second on the road on Sunday, but that time penalty proved costly as it dropped him to fourth once it was applied after the chequered flag.
His protests against the FIA stewards during the race also drew the governing body’s attention, with the ‘personal insults’ he sent their way earning him a formal warning as a result.
Sergio Perez: ‘I think Lando also had some responsibility’
Additional reporting by Thomas Maher
Perez had been having an excellent drive from ninth on the grid as he worked his way up to the podium places, but made contact with Norris as the two touched tyres at the Turn 6 hairpin.
This led to the Red Bull driver being penalised for causing a collision, with Norris taking to the escape road and heading further up the track, before the Mexican was able to get by with a cleaner move on the next lap.
Norris felt blame for the incident fell on Perez’s shoulders, calling the move “careless”, but despite having apologised to the stewards for his protests in the race, Perez still took the view that it was a racing incident between the pair.
“Yeah, to be totally honest,” Perez told media including PlanetF1.com in Abu Dhabi when asked if he disagreed with his penalty.
“We ended up contacting, which was unfortunate, but to make contact, you require both parties.
“I think Lando also had some responsibility in that, because he turned into me as if there was no-one there.
“We ended up making contact tyre to tyre as I was fully alongside him. He cut the corner, he gained time, and I still had the penalty.
“I honestly don’t agree with the decision but, as a driver, there’s nothing you can do.
“I mean, I’m just happy with the performance we put in today.
“In my opinion, it was a 50/50, but he didn’t end up losing anything, if anything he gained.
“Yeah, hard to understand why I got the penalty, if I’m totally honest.”