Sergio Perez cleared Alexander Albon in the battle for tenth place and received a penalty for it – Second investigation not clear for commissioners
Alexander Albon was on his way to possible points for Williams at the Singapore Formula One race, but a collision with Red Bull driver Sergio Perez thwarted a top-10 result for the Thai. Perez was found to be the main culprit in the incident by the stewards and received a five-second penalty and a penalty point (go to overview) for the action.
It all happened on the 58th of 62 laps in the battle for tenth place. Albon was just behind the AlphaTauri of Liam Lawson and just ahead of Perez as he headed for the hairpin behind Anderson Bridge.
Perez attempted an optimistic manoeuvre at this point and braked to the inside of the Williams, but the Williams was already turning into the corner, causing a collision. Perez was able to continue, Albon was sent into the wall and could only resume racing after a few seconds. By then he had dropped back to 14th position.
“I had nowhere to go in turn 13,” Perez defended himself. “I just went for it. It’s always so difficult to make an overtaking manoeuvre here.”
According to the commissioners, Perez had attempted an “optimistic” late manoeuvre at this point, which they classify as a “dive” manoeuvre. Albon, on the other hand, “could not have done anything” to prevent the collision, which is why Perez received the overwhelming blame for the collision.
However, the commissioners also perceived Lawson’s role, who was driving slowly in front of Albon. “This caused car 11 to believe he could overtake,” they inform. “Therefore, we decided to award only one penalty point as mitigation. “
Albon angry: Should have got points
The five-second penalty had no effect on Perez in the end, as he finished around eleven seconds ahead of Lawson in eighth place, which he retained.
The whole team pushed hard to earn points today but sadly came up short at the very end. We’ll keep working hard pic.twitter.com/PGUBdiAAM0
– Williams Racing (@WilliamsRacing) September 17, 2023
For Albon, on the other hand, the scene had a more bitter outcome as he finished eleventh and came away empty-handed. “We drove the race perfectly,” he frets. “I was about to overtake Liam. Then Checo did a divebomb on me at turn 13.”
“I had to reverse out, dropped back to 13th and finished 11th,” the Williams driver lamented. “So we should have finished in the points today, which we didn’t. “
Who was in front? I don’t know!
Albon and Perez had to go to the commissioners for another scene, though, because Albon was said to have overtaken his rival under the virtual safety car in contravention of the rules. However, this incident was put on file without any further sanction.
The problem was that Albon came into the pits on lap 43 under the virtual safety car. At the pit exit, there was disagreement as to which driver had passed the safety car line 2 first and was therefore in front. First, the Williams got in front of the Red Bull, which was investigated.
“During the VSC phase, car 23, which left the pit lane, and car 11, which was on track, arrived at SC2 at the same time,” said the commissioners. And: “The timing system was not able to detect a difference between the respective arrival times in SC2.”
Video evidence also failed to produce a conclusive result, so the commissioners left it as it had gone.
“Each of the team representatives felt that no further action should be taken as no definitive information was available at this stage. The sports commissioners concur with this view. “