Lewis Hamilton crashes out of the Qatar Grand Prix on the first corner after colliding with team-mate George Russell… as tensions reach boiling point between Mercedes drivers before veteran accepts it was his fault
- Lewis Hamilton and George Russell collide on opening corner of race in Qatar
- The Mercedes duo both went into the gravel with Hamilton’s right tyre bursting
- Listen to the latest episode of Mail Sport’s podcast ‘It’s All Kicking Off!’
Lewis Hamilton and George Russell collided on the opening corner of the Qatar Grand Prix.
The Mercedes duo were duelling off the line – both went into the gravel, with Hamilton forced out of the race with a bust rear right tyre.
He climbed out of the cockpit and was unhurt, as the safety car was deployed.
Russell had started second and Hamilton third. Hamilton made a good start and recklessly pressed his case on the outside of the right-hander. He clipped Russell, who had nowhere to go.
‘Are you OK, mate?’ Hamilton was asked. ‘I was taken out by my own team-mate.’
Lewis Hamilton collided with George Russell on the opening corner of the Qatar Grand Prix
Both cars went into the gravel as Hamilton’s right tyre burst during the collision with Russell
Russell said: ‘That’s the second race in a row,’ referring to a fierce battle between the pair in Japan.
Tensions are now boiling at Mercedes, and team principal Toto Wolff is – unbelievably – absent after ill-timed surgery on his knee.
Russell then said: ‘Sorry guys. I wasn’t even looking. He came from nowhere.’
He later added: ‘I have just watched the replays on the TV screens,. I couldn’t do anything. Completely sandwiched. Come on.
Hamilton can only look on after the incident as tensions were raised further at Mercedes
Hamilton accepted full responsibility for the crash in a post on X after the race had ended
Russell went into the pits but carried on.
Following the race, Hamilton took to social media to take full responsibility for the incident, and apologised to his Mercedes team-mate.
Hamilton said on X: ‘I’ve watched the replay and it was 100% my fault and I take full responsibility. Apologies to my team and to George.’
Max Verstappen continued his dominance of the championship with his 14th win over the season, with Oscar Piastri in second and Lando Norris behind him.
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