Mahindra Racing’s Nick Heidfeld has admitted that he was at fault for the collision with Daniel Abt in the opening stages of the Santiago E-Prix.
The contact, which occurred at Turn 2, contributed to the retirement of both cars but Heidfeld was quick to offer an apology to the Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler driver.
“I take the blame for this one,” Heidfeld told e-racing365.
“My start wasn’t fantastic but I made up some places around Turn 3 on the outside and then managed to take one more car.
“Then a gap opened up with Abt and in a split second I thought, ‘there is the gap and I’ll go for it.’
“The problem was that I didn’t manage to put my car really next to him on the turning point. He didn’t see me and it was his corner, he turned in, and I couldn’t avoid him.”
Heidfeld felt doubly frustrated about the incident, as he believed he could have mirrored teammate Felix Rosenqvist’s rise through the field during the race.
The Swede eventually finished fourth after starting 14th on the grid.
“It is really hard to take and really maddening because when you know you did something wrong it is tough,” said Heidfeld.
“Sometimes things just don’t go your way and you accept that, but if you know it was through your own mistake it is really hard.”
Abt, who had to park his first car when a track-rod snapped because of the contact, was accepting of Heidfeld’s apology after the race.
“At first I could continue as the steering wheel was just out of alignment but after a few laps I couldn’t turn and it was over,” he said.