• Singapore Grand Prix

Schumacher hit with 10-place grid penalty for Vergne crash

ESPN Staff
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Michael Schumacher was given a ten-place grid penalty for the next event after causing an accident with Jean-Eric Vergne © Getty Images

Michael Schumacher has been given a ten-place grid penalty for the Japanese Grand Prix after causing a hefty collision with Jean-Eric Vergne in Singapore.

Schumacher piled into the back of the Toro Rosso at turn 14 after the first safety car restart, taking both cars out of the race. Schumacher's previous history of causing a similar accident at the Spanish Grand Prix with Bruno Senna meant the stewards gave him a ten-place rather than five-place grid penalty.

"It was obviously a very unfortunate ending to my race this evening when I ran into the car of Vergne who accepted my apology straight afterwards," Schumacher said. "I am not totally sure why it happened like this; I was braking but the deceleration was not as strong as it usually would be, and I could not avoid running into the car in front of me. We have to find out what has happened. Up until then, I think it would have been possible to get some points this evening."

Vergne said he felt he could have finished seventh without the accident, but promised not to hold a grudge.

"I was focusing on catching Perez at that point, trying to brake late to catch him, so I am not too sure what happened exactly, but I assume Michael braked a bit too late and could not avoid running in to me. There is no sense in being angry about it, because these things happen in racing and even the most experienced driver on the grid can make mistakes! He said sorry and that's the end of it."