Lando Norris sarcastically labelled Sergio Perez’s overtake on him as “impressive”, as the Mexican made contact with the McLaren driver during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Perez certainly wasn’t the happiest of drivers after the 2023 season finale, as he was demoted from second to fourth following a five-second time penalty for hitting Norris earlier in the race.
The Red Bull driver boasted significantly better pace than Norris and caught the McLaren driver, who was aware that Checo was faster.
Perez tried to overtake Norris at the tight Turn 6, something the McLaren driver even tried to let the Mexican do.
However, the 33-year-old went wide due to understeer and collided with Norris, resulting in the time penalty for causing a collision.
He labelled the penalty as a “joke” and hit out at the stewards, who also slapped with him a formal warning after the race.
Norris couldn’t believe that the incident happened given that he “tried to let him past” at the corner, only for Perez to “somehow” make contact with the 23-year-old.
“He was ahead [at the apex]. I tried to let him past!” revealed Norris, as reported by Motorsport.com.
“I was four car lengths away from the apex. Somehow, he still crashed into me… impressive. I literally tried to let him past and somehow he crashed into me.”
Norris ended up finishing behind Perez in fifth, which sadly for him wasn’t enough to clinch fourth in the Drivers’ Championship.
Instead, Norris had to settle for sixth, something which did leave him feeling a little disappointed after what’s been a very positive fightback.
Fernando Alonso ultimately secured fourth courtesy of having finished on the rostrum more times than Charles Leclerc, who had to settle for fifth in the standings.
Norris isn’t too bothered by missing out on fourth, although he admits he would’ve “loved” it.
“Is it in the back of your head? Yes. Would I have loved to be fourth? Yes,” Norris admitted.
“But [second-starting] Charles jumped me, so nothing I could do about that. He had a very good weekend.
“If you’re not first you’re last, so it doesn’t bother me too much… it doesn’t change anything, doesn’t change my mentality in any way.”