“Sh*t He Did Me in Qatar”: Lewis Hamilton Exposes Sergio Perez’s Antics Only Hours After His Crash With Charles Leclerc

Published 10/29/2023, 7:31 PM EDT

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Here’s what has stood out for Lewis Hamilton in the past few races: In Japan, he was in an on-track battle with his teammate. In Qatar, he crashed into his teammate. And in Austin, he crossed the line in P2 but got disqualified. After how the past few races have played out, a P2 (he gets to keep) at the Mexican GP was all he could’ve hoped for. An early incident in the race that helped him achieve the P2 brought back ghosts of his past. What’s surprising was that he actually seemed amused by it.

In Mexico, Charles Leclerc started on pole. With Max Verstappen in P3 and Sergio Perez in P5, both Red Bulls got a great start, challenging for the lead at Turn 1. Leclerc got caught in a Red Bull sandwich, and Perez made contact with him, effectively taking himself out of the race. Sound familiar? It sure did to Hamilton.

Lewis Hamilton compared Sergio Perez to himself at the Mexican GP


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Rewind to the Qatar GP. Hamilton started in P3 behind Verstappen and George Russell—his Mercedes teammate. After a great start off the line, he was alongside Russell and Verstappen going into Turn 1—Russell being the filling in the 2021 rivals’ sandwich.  Seeing the opportunity to take the lead, Hamilton turned in on Russell, made contact, and spun into the gravel. In a race where he could’ve achieved a podium, his chances ended as soon as he got a whiff of the lead.

Comparing what happened in Qatar and in Mexico, you can see how similar the two incidents were. The driver on the outside of Turn 1 retired from the race, and the driver on the innermost part of the turn (Verstappen) won the race (shocker!). After starting in P6 in Mexico, Hamilton benefitted from the chaos in front of him. With the race pace, he was able to find in the W14, he finished in P2.


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In the Mexican GP edition of Max Verstappen’s Podcast in the cool-down room, it was Hamilton who stole the show. With replays of the start playing on screen, Hamilton saw what happened with Perez and asked, “Is he out?” Verstappen confirmed it. When he saw Leclerc’s onboard at the start and could see Perez turning into the Monegasque, Hamilton couldn’t help but exclaim, “Where’s he going?! Sh*t he did me in Qatar!”

Toto Wolff Ends War of Words With Lewis Hamilton as Mercedes Receives Special Shoutout Post Mexico Success

Something else that was similar between both incidents was the driver who faced the wrath of fans.

If Perez was Hamilton, Leclerc would be Russell

At the Qatar GP, Hamilton started on the soft tires as opposed to Russell and Verstappen’s mediums. Going into the race, Mercedes knew there was a good chance Hamilton would get a better start off the line because of his tires. Even so, Mercedes didn’t enforce any team orders to ensure Russell wouldn’t fight Hamilton for the lead. Although the crash wasn’t Russell’s fault because he had nowhere to go, that didn’t stop fans from berating the 25-year-old and Mercedes for compromising Hamilton. Something similar happened in Mexico.


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With Leclerc being caught in the Red Bull sandwich, he had nowhere to go. So when Perez turned in on him and took himself out of the race, Mexican fans weren’t too pleased. They came to see their home hero perform well, but his race ended as soon as it started because of the incident with Leclerc. The Monegasque faces their wrath during the post-race interview after finishing P3. When he came to talk, they booed him. Leclerc responded, “A lot of booing, a lot of booing. Guys I had nowhere to go!”


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WATCH THIS STORY | Lewis Hamilton Gets Past Flashbacks Against George Russell at the 2023 Spanish GP

Did you think Sergio Perez pulled a Lewis Hamilton from Qatar at the Mexican GP? And did Leclerc deserve the booing?


Written by:

Aditi Krishnan


One take at a time

Aditi is a senior F1 writer at EssentiallySports. She fell in love with F1 in 2020. It happened when her brother tuned into that first race weekend in Austria, and she knew right then and there that she had to learn everything she could about the sport.
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Edited by:

Aishwary Gaonkar