Kamui Kobayashi confessed to being 'disappointed' after retiring from the European Grand Prix following a collision with Ferrari's Felipe Massa. It had been an incident packed race for the Sauber driver, who had already been involved in a coming together with the Williams of Bruno Senna.
Kobayashi often goes well round Valencia, and so it proved during the early stages of the eighth round of F1 2012. The Japanese star made a strong start from seventh and moved up to fourth early on. Despite dropping behind Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso, he still looked on course for a strong result until the incident with Senna.
“What a race today, however, I am very disappointed,” he said. “I definitely had a good start from seventh. I made up two positions straight away and then overtook Pastor Maldonado on lap one.
“On lap 20 I was following Kimi Raikkonen, who was overtaking Bruno Senna, and then I was on the inside next to Senna. I had the wall and nowhere to go when we touched. I had to pit for a nose change.”
Kobayashi had a run on Senna and had poked his nose alongside, only to have the door slammed firmly in his face by the Williams driver, the inevitable contact forcing both drivers to pit for repairs, and the controversy didn't stop there for the 25-year-old.
“When the race was restarted after the safety car period, I was fighting with Felipe Massa for position. Our cars touched and this time the damage was too bad to continue,” Kobayashi added.
Kobayashi was later absolved of blame for the Senna incident, however, he didn't get let off the hook for the collision with Massa at turn ten, the stewards deeming him responsible and he was handed a five-place grid penalty for Silverstone.
by Philip Barclay