Perez, Ocon not allowed to race each other anymore
Force India team principal Otmar Szafnauer says that Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon won't be allowed to race each other after their first lap contact in the Singapore Grand Prix.
The pair touched on the exit of Turn 3 on the first lap when Ocon tried to go around the outside, and his teammate moved over and put the Frenchman into the wall.
Szafnauer felt that the Mexican could have left more room.
After past incidents, Szafnauer had reminded both drivers before the Belgian GP – where they both started in the top four and the revamped team was restarting on zero points and a good result was crucial – of the importance of not coming into contact with other.
"I didn't remind them here, maybe I should have done," he told Motorsport.com. "But they know it now, and again they're not going to race any more if they can't do it.
"There wasn't any room, Checo should have given him room, and Checo had plenty of room.
"Esteban put himself in a position where if Checo moved over, he couldn't do anything about it. But your teammate shouldn't do that to you.
"If it's another car, then you shouldn't have put yourself there. But if it's your teammate, you've got to have that respect.
"It's just a matter of fact, it is what it is. And next race we'll tell them the rules, and it won't happen again, it's that simple."
Regarding the FIA decision to take no action, he said: "They looked at it and said racing incident, and I'm sure it was, if they weren't teammates.
"But from my perspective, you leave your teammate room, the team comes first. And he had room to leave him."
Szafnauer suggested Perez that had accepted he was at fault.
"I think so. He's got to look at the footage, it's pretty clear," he added.
Although the two drivers have been involved in incidents in the past, this was the first one under the team's current owner Lawrence Stroll, and Szafnauer was seen in discussion with the Canadian after the flag.
"The thing is as a team owner or team principal or a manager, once they're out there, you can't control them.
"You've got to do the controlling here, before you go out. So he's in the same position. Once they're out there they've got the wheel, so we've got to control them before that.
"It hurt us. We should have scored at least 10 today, and that means McLaren would have been behind us. It hurt us by a good 10-12 points."
Esteban Ocon, Racing Point Force India VJM11 and Sergio Perez, Racing Point Force India VJM11 battle at the start of the race
Photo by: Manuel Goria / Sutton Images
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About this article
|Drivers||Sergio Perez Shop Now , Esteban Ocon|
|Article type||Breaking news|