Former teammates Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon collided in the first free practice of the Emilia Romagna GP in Imola. The track in Imola already showed its teeth to Formula 1 drivers on Friday. We saw a lot of car crashes off the track, with Mazepin continuing his negative series of crashes that started back in Bahrain.
The first free practice was marked by the collision of Ocon and Perez, otherwise former drivers of Force India, in the Villeneuve bend, due to which the free training was briefly interrupted. The reason for the collision is Perez's faulty estimate of the speed of Alpine's driver Ocon.
Sergio Perez, who was driving a fast lap during the collision, seriously damaged the rear left wheel of his Red Bull, while the Ocon damaged part of the floor. In addition, during one part of the first free practice, radio communication did not work and this was also one of the reasons for the collision of these two drivers.
The referees reviewed the incident and concluded that there was no reason to penalize the drivers, allowing both to continue driving in the second free practice. The Mexican shared his view of the incident with the media after the race.
"We didn't have a radio connection, so I think it was a misunderstanding. I thought Esteban was slower than he really was and he, just like me, misjudged the entrance to the corner, but he only got bad timing from me.
Perez is optimistic
Checo Perez drove the sixth-best time in the second free practice, while his teammate Max Verstappen drove only five laps due to car problems and only achieved the 15th best time until then. Despite all the hardships in free practice, Perez expressed optimism and hope that both Red Bull drivers will qualify for Q3 in today’s qualifiers.
Perez's former teammate from Force India, Esteban Ocon, sees the incident as a clumsy set of circumstances. By the way, the Mexican and the Frenchman fought big fights as teammates, which often ended in incidents on the track.
But Ocon points out for this incident that this is a misunderstanding. “It was awkward, but we talked about it and the referee also said it wasn’t something significant. There were more worries about the damage to both of them, but that did not compromise our performance in the second training, which is, of course, the most important thing. " Ocon continues: "We came out on time and the guys in the garage did a fantastic job."