Perez was making his way through the field after starting from the pit lane following a shock Q1 exit at Zandvoort.

Perez’s progress was initially halted after flat-spotting his tyres when running behind Nikita Mazepin.

“We managed to minimise a bit the damage, especially on this track which is very much impossible to overtake,” Perez said. “A lot of risk had to be taken.

“[It was] a race really complicated a lot with Nikita in the beginning because I flat-spotted my tyres. He moved really late under braking. To avoid him I flat-spotted my tyres, I had to come in and basically start again, our race. I think that cost us probably P6.”

Later on, the Mexican attempted to overtake Norris around the outside of Turn 1 as the pair battled for ninth.

The pair touched on the exit of the corner, giving Perez significant damage.

“It was a bit of a shame there at the end, when I passed Lando I had a lot of damage on the right-hand side of the car,” he said. I thought it was quite unnecessary. I was there, I didn’t have enough space and we touched.

“Since then on, I lost a lot of grip, basically.”

Giving his side of the story, Norris revealed that contact with Perez knocked his foot off the throttle and sent his car airborne momentarily.

“The car jumped quite high, and my foot came off the throttle,” Norris explained. “So it was definitely less than ideal, but I did not want to make his life easy, I’m not going to let him past, I want to try and hold position. But we got a bit closer than we anticipated.”

After picking up a penalty for running Perez out of road at the Red Bull Ring, Norris was keen to ensure there wasn’t a repeat but still wanted to put up a tough fight.

“Yes, I can’t look in my mirror the whole way around the corner,” Norris added. “So a bit of it has to be done on judgment and expectation of him respecting and knowing that I’m not going to make his life easy. Knowing that he has to go around the outside. I think I left him enough room.

“Of course I’m going to try and squeeze him and not make his life easy. But it is only that I’m not going to try to make contact or anything. The last time I did I got a penalty, so I’m not stupid, I am not silly. I’m not going to let them pass either.”