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Perez: 'I'm very disappointed with myself'

Sergio Perez, Force India
© XPB 

Sergio Perez held himself partly responsible for the double on-track clash endured by Force India's drivers at the Belgian GP.

Perez and Ocon twice made contact in the same spot Sunday afternoon. The pair touched soon after the start on the run down towards Eau Rouge, with Perez squeezing Ocon against the old pit wall, and then collided again 30 laps later when Ocon attempted to out-run his team mate after La Source.

The French driver's left front wing touched and punctured Perez's rear right wheel, ultimately causing the Mexican's retirement while Ocon salvaged a points scoring P9 finish.

While Perez felt he was at fault in the first encounter, he believed Ocon later had attempted an optimistic move which resulted in the second contact.

"The first one was 100 percent my fault," admitted Perez.

"My mistake came at the start when I selected the start too late, and didn't realize that I didn't have the right mode for the start, so I had like 50 percent or less power.

"I did a good start but half-way through, Hulkenberg dived into the inside. It was quite messy. When I looked into my mirrors after the corner, everyone was really far behind, but then I moved to the right and Esteban was just there and I totally didn't see him at all."

"The second incident, I think Esteban was really optimistic because there was no room for two cars," insisted Perez.

"He had the whole straight to do the maneuver. It's a shame that we touched because we ruined our race."

Force India's chief operating officer was understandably unimpressed with his drivers' Sunday drive, and threatened to impose team orders.

Asked whether he thought he had let the team down, Perez conceded that the inner-team incidents should not be happening.

"I'm very disappointed with myself today," he said.

"It's the first time that I do something wrong that I have to say it. This is the day, with the first collision. The other could have been quite avoidable.

"We'll just have to talk. When we look back, everything started back in Baku, but now we have to move forward as a team.

"Today we lost so many points. It was one of our strongest tracks. People are closing the gap to us, so it was really important."

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