Hungarian Grand Prix – Racing Point’s Sergio Perez said he felt Daniel Ricciardo’s attempted overtake at the end of Q1 wasn’t respectful of qualifying etiquette.
The duo were line astern as they prepared for their final runs in Q1, with Perez ahead of Daniel Ricciardo’s Renault. While the end of the session was close, neither were under pressure to reach the line in time before the chequered flag, but Ricciardo suddenly decided to try overtaking the Racing Point around the outside of the final corner to steal track position and start his flying lap ahead of the Mexican driver.
Perez, not having any of it, accelerated to normal speed as the Renault drew alongside, and started his flying lap with Ricciardo having to settle in behind. In the end, neither driver benefitted. Perez qualified P17, with Ricciardo down in P18. Afterwards, the pair weren’t particularly happy with the other, as Perez explained it from his perspective.
“We were queueing and just before the final lap, Daniel tried to overtake and then I had to push because it’s the final corner and I don’t want to start too close to him.” the Racing Point driver explained. “But I ended up just too close to Norris then as a result. I think Q2 was possible with a perfect Q1 but it didn’t happen today, it’s been a bit of a struggle.”
“We were stuck in traffic and everyone was trying to open a gap.” he said. “You see the car ahead and everyone was trying to open gaps. What Daniel tried there was very disrespectful and he screwed up my lap and his lap. I ended up starting my lap too close to Norris and Daniel then too close to me so it was just a very bad day for us.”
Ricciardo was angry about the situation with Perez, as the other Renault of Nico Hulkenberg went on to get into Q2 and challenge for Q3. The Australian said that his team had put him in a compromised position and hadn’t given him enough information ahead of starting his flying lap: “It actually felt OK out there but the last run…that’s when you’ve to do it. It was a bit of a mess, opening the lap.”
“We put ourselves in traffic and, at that point, we could have known better ahead of the final corner if I needed to create space earlier. So, I wasn’t creating space and I arrived at the final corner. Everyone was backed up, so what do you do? Do you try and pass them and keep your tyre temps or hang back and start your lap with cold tyres.”
“I tried to go, but Sergio wasn’t having any of that. I felt like Perez and I screwed each other. It was too late trying to make something happen and then the lap is compromised.”
“Tomorrow is another day, and we’ll see what happens. Certainly, right now, it’s the most upset I’ve been in a while.”