Perez ‘just a passenger’ in Monaco qualifying crash

Perez ‘just a passenger’ in Monaco qualifying crash

Perez ‘just a passenger’ in Monaco qualifying crash

Perez ‘just a passenger’ in Monaco qualifying crash

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Sergio Perez, who wrecked in his Red Bull car in final qualifying at the Monaco Grand Prix on Saturday, said he was “just a passenger.”

The Mexican driver said he lost control on cold tires when he attacked early at the Mirabeau corner, touched the throttle and “felt I was immediately a passenger”.

He ended up sliding into the barriers damaging the front and rear of his Red Bull.

“My boys now have a long night ahead,” he said. “But I hope we will be there and we can take a lot of points tomorrow.”

Perez was dicing with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc for fastest lap and pole position.

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His team-mate world champion and series leader Max Verstappen was also disappointed and frustrated at winding up in fourth place, one behind Perez, on the grid for Sunday’s race.

Leclerc took pole ahead of Carlos Sainz in a Ferrari one-two, after Sainz had collided with the already-crashed Perez at the Mirabeau.

“I wouldn’t have been able to go for pole today,” said Verstappen. “Charles was too strong all weekend, but maybe second.

“I was trying that when the yellow flags came out and I had to back off and then the traffic jam because the track was blocked – for the second time in two years.

“But that’s Monaco. Everyone’s on the limit at the end and mistakes can happen.

“It was coming together for me on my final run, but in the end I couldn’t show it and that made it look more dramatic. It is what it is.”

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Red Bull team boss Christian Horner agreed that Leclerc was too quick for his drivers.

“I don’t think pole was on today,” he said. “Charles was mighty so congratulations to him because we couldn’t have done that time.”

He added: “It’s a pity. So, we’re still P3 and P4 with maybe a bit of weather around tomorrow – it’s disappointing not to be on the front row, but we’ll fight from there.”

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