Perez: Magnussen deserved penalty for ‘dangerous’ first lap move


Sergio Perez says he was surprised by the stewards’ decision not to sanction Kevin Magnussen following the pair’s dramatic first lap crash in the Monaco Grand Prix.

Perez was ahead of both Magnussen and his Haas teammate Nico Hulkenberg as the field rushed up the hill towards Beau Rivage after the start.

The Dane saw a gap on the right-side of the track and opted to try and overtake the Red Bull driver. However, as Perez continued to drift right, the space closed up and led to a contact between the two cars, with the Mexican careening into the barriers, causing significant damage and triggering a red flag to halt the race.

Unfortunately, in the mayhem, Perez tagged Hulkenberg who was subsequently also propelled into the barriers, leaving ultimately three cars out on the spot.

Magnussen argued that he had a legitimate shot at taking the inside line and that Perez wasn't leaving him enough space. He feels he was entitled to make the move as long as a part of his car was alongside Perez's.

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Unsurprisingly, the Red Bull driver had a different view of events contending that Magnussen was overly ambitious and should have yielded to avoid the collision.

The severity of the crash and the resulting impact on his race clearly fueled his frustration.

"If you see my onboard, at no point you see Kevin's car – not even close to me, alongside me, and you could see that the wall is just getting closer and closer," Perez explained.

"To keep it flat out, there was only one way out of it, and it was either contact with my car or with the barrier.

"There was just simply no room for both cars and at some point, he had to realise that - I mean, I've been in that occasion - and many times when you are the car behind you just have to realise that it's time to back off, before things get closer to you."

"I'm very surprised [the incident was not investigated] because [of] the amount of damage and how dangerous the damage was. I'm really surprised."

Regarding Magnussen’s claim that Perez should have given him more space, the latter said once again that the Dane should have lifted, adding that his behaviour was a case of “dangerous driving”.

"I think he clearly shouldn't be there in the first place because there is just one way to get out of that. It will be just to hit the wall, he either hit the wall or hit my car. The right side of my car,” commented Perez.

"So how does he want me to leave him room if he's not even alongside? There's a point where you see the wall is coming to you and you just have to back off. It has happened to me many times and there's a point where you just have to back off.

"I'm really surprised. I get the lap one 'let them race', but I think this was more dangerous driving just to keep it flat out knowing that they were going to come contact me. At some point I think that was some dangerous driving.”

Perez suggested – and not for the first time – that Magnussen is indifferent to the consequences of his actions out on the race track.

"I don't think he really thinks about the outcome,” he said. “You sometimes find yourself in a position and you have to take a very quick decision to say, 'okay, there's only one way of it and it's going to be contact so I'd better back out' - but he will go for the contact."

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