Augusto Farfus has shouldered the blame for the accident at the start of the first World Touring Car Championship race at Brno which took a number of leading driver out of contention for victory.
Farfus had started from pole position, but moved over on Andy Priaulx on the run to turn one and clattered into his fellow BMW driver before being tipped into a spin.
The resulting melee also caught out SEAT's Jordi Gene and all three Chevrolet driver. While Alex Zanardi went on to win the race for BMW, the incident allowed SEAT to enjoy unexpected success at a circuit that was expected to favour the rear-wheel drive BMW over the diesel-powered Leon.
A miserable weekend for Farfus was then compounded in race two by a retirement on the opening lap, but it was the incident in race which left the Brazilian looking for forgiveness.
“I take the blame for the accident in race one,” he said. “I'm really sorry for the other drivers who had to retire due to my mistake. I'm extremely disappointed now.”
Farfus' driving in the opening race were roundly criticised from a number of quarters, with Chevrolet's Nicola Larini admitting that the crash had ruined the team's weekend.
Indeed, such was the impact on the Cruze squad that it was outscored by LADA in the manufacturers' championship race.
“It is a pity that after all the team's efforts and good work, the results were ruined by the mistake of Farfus at the first corner,” the Italian said. “I had made a good start but all of a sudden, Farfus moved left hitting me and Priaulx. That was the end of my race.”