Jolyon Palmer has been quick to accept the blame for the contact he had with Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, but the Renault racer explains he “could not stop the car” due to a lack of grip.
Palmer tried to take advantage of being lapped by the leaders to attempt a move on Sainz for P13, but the Briton ended up sending the Spaniard into a spin at Turn 17 and had to pit as a result.
“I was struggling for grip,” Palmer told TV crews after the race. “I was going for the inside and he squeezed me on the second part and then I could not stop the car. I’ll take the blame because I ran into the back of him.
“At the end of the day, it was an unfortunate incident and I had no more grip and could not stop the car. I am sorry for him but I think we had bigger problems in our race.”
Palmer took a five-second penalty for the incident, while Sainz retired shortly after with a faulty gearbox. Although the Briton would have wanted to conclude his maiden Formula One campaign on a higher note, Palmer has been pleased with his steady progress throughout the season.
“Overall it’s been a good first year,” he added. “I’ve learnt a lot. It’s been pretty positive, especially the second half of the year we’ve been doing a really good job in qualifying and in the races.
“[Abu Dhabi] was a tough one but we come back next year and hope the car is more competitive and we can do a much better job.”