WATCH: Charles Leclerc Apologizes to Sergio Perez after the Sakhir Grand Prix

Published 12/07/2020, 2:13 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Sakhir Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – December 5, 2020 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in the garage during practice FIA/Handout via REUTERS


Charles Leclerc unintentionally caused an accident during the starting lap of the Sakhir GP, trying to make an aggressive move on Perez. Leclerc was trying to go inside Perez’s racing line. However, he locked up and failed to make the apex.

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He ended up crashing into Perez’s right rear. Sergio Perez spun around and fell to the back of the grid, and Leclerc had to retire his car. Meanwhile, Max Verstappen crashed into the wall, trying to evade Perez.

Perez did not back down and fought his way from the back of the grid to win his first-ever Grand Prix. Charles Leclerc accepted the blame for the accident, apologized to Sergio Perez, and congratulated him on his win after the race.

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WATCH – Max Verstappen and Leclerc Crash Out of Sakhir GP After a Chaotic Start

Charles Leclerc is penalized for causing the opening lap crash

After the crash, Max Verstappen was fuming. There was nothing he could do. He was one of the front runners for winning the race this weekend. Max said, “I don’t know why they were being so aggressive and so reckless.

“So I don’t really know why, especially Charles in turn four, why he dives up the inside like that. Especially braking that late as well. What do you expect?” he further added.

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The race stewards investigated the incident and handed down a three-place grid penalty to the Monegasque. The stewards’ statement read, “Car 16 [Leclerc] braked too late into Turn 4, locking the front right wheel and colliding with Car 11 [Perez] which was taking the normal racing line into the corner.”

Formula One F1 – Sakhir Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – December 6, 2020 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc after he crashes out of the race Pool via REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

Charles Leclerc was involved in another incident earlier this year at the Styrian Grand Prix. He was once again trying to make an aggressive move on the inside line of Sebastian Vettel. He crashed into Sebastian’s rear and both Ferrari cars had to eventually retire.

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Sergio Perez came from the bottom of the first lap to win the race at the end; it was the Mexican’s first career race win. He does not have a seat in 2021 as of now. However, one can argue that he has made a strong case for his racing skills. It is certain that if he misses out on the 2021 season, he will be back in 2022 to build on his form.

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Ayush Manjunath

586 articles

Ayush Manjunath is a Formula 1 author for EssentiallySports with more than 500 articles to his name. A Law graduate and a current Sports Management student, Ayush also has a certificate from UCLA on Sports, Media and Entertainment Management. He has an undying love for motorsports and lives to see Max Verstappen, George Russell, Charles Leclerc, and Lando Norris battle for the championship one day!

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