Sainz and Massa accuse each other of impeding

2017 Brazilian Grand Prix

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Carlos Sainz Jnr rejected Felipe Massa’s claim he deliberately held up the Williams driver during Q3 at Interlagos.

The Williams and Renault drivers pointed fingers at each other after their encounter in qualifying and previous run-in during practice yesterday.

“It’s a very strong accusation to say I did something on purpose,” Sainz told the media after qualifying.

Sainz said he was held up by the Williams driver during the top ten qualifying shoot-out. “He could have got out of the way before turn four,” he said. “I had to do turn four all the way behind him. I was impeded him for two or three tenths in my first lap of Q3.”

Brazilian Grand Prix qualifying in pictures
Massa then confronted Sainz about the incident after the session. “He started complaining, talking about yesterday,” said Sainz. “It’s something I don’t really understand at the moment.”

“He was talking about yesterday and today. I don’t know, I wasn’t really listening because for me it isn’t worth it.”

However Massa told the media he is “not starting in the position I’m supposed to” because Sainz held him up and wants the stewards to investigate the incident.

“I was very happy with the qualifying until Q3 when it just lose a lap because a driver disturb you by purpose,” he said. “It’s really disappointing.”

“I was much more in front of him when I left the garage. And I spoke to my engineer ‘he’s in a lap or not?’ And he said ‘yeah he’s in a lap’ so after corner five I let him go.”

“But I was a lot more in front than him and he was completely in front of me, very close. For sure I lost a lot of time, you can see in the lap time.”

According to Massa, Sainz accused him of impeding during yesterday’s practice session.

“I said ‘you disturb me by purpose?’ He said ‘yes, I did because you disturb me [in] the weekend.’ I said ‘yeah because I disturb you maybe one lap in the long run yesterday’.”

“I would never do this by purpose to a driver. That is too much.”

2017 Brazilian Grand Prix

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    5 comments on “Sainz and Massa accuse each other of impeding”

    1. It’s like being back at primary school.

    2. Sainz should’ve let him past on the Reta Oposta (the short straight between turns 3 and 4) straight already. He had all the time in the world to do it on that part of the circuit.

      1. Yep. And he looked rather hesitant to get out of the way before Ferradura, slightly compromising Massa’s line.
        It was pretty obvious that Massa’s lap was affected by Sainz (not including the slide that made him abandon the attempt), but probably not enough so to warrant a penalty. And I can’t remember seeing the incident that seems to have infuriated Sainz, maybe that was even worse. But the footage we did see, as well as Sainz’s radio message, suggest that his behaviour might’ve been deliberately naughty.

        Be that as it may, I’m annoyed that Massa’s Q3 ended the way it did. He had the pace to beat Pérez, as Q2 had shown, but his wasted first attempt apparently pressurised him into making another mistake in his second attempt. Pity.
        They say overtaking is possible in Interlagos, but that’s more or less true for Hamilton or Ricciardo, who will be battling the Saubers and Toro Rossos during their first stints, but less so for a Williams that has a pace advantage in the vicinity of a tenth per second over the cars ahead.

    3. I’m glad to see Massa go at the end of the year, i’ve had it with that guy for a while now. Always one of the first to pass judgement on others (also in incidents he isn’t involved in). But when he’s involved in something it’s never his fault.

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