Pierre Gasly said he was convinced he was going to crash in his near-miss with team mate Brendon Hartley during qualifying.

Gasly narrowly avoided hitting his team mate, who had slowed with a puncture approaching turn 15, at around 300kph. “It was really, really scary,” said Gasly.

“For me I was 100% for sure I was going to crash into him. We arrived so fast on that part of the track, massive delta of speed. I went left, right, left, right so I didn’t really know which way to go and then last moment I turned to the right. But from the inside everything was so fast, I was sure it was too late and I was going to take off on his rear wheel.”

Hartley had slowed abruptly after discovering he’d punctured a tyre after clipping the wall a few corners earlier. Gasly, who was on a flying lap, didn’t see his team mate until the last moment.

“Turn 14 is sort of a blind corner, I could not really see him until I did this last left kink before turn 15,” he said.

“I managed to avoid him but then I went on the kerb so when I braked I had both wheels in the air, could not slow down the car, it was scary. And I was upset because I could not improve and it ruined my lap. Just a shame it happened.”

Hartley explained Gasly arrived behind him very soon after he picked up his puncture.

Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren, Baku City Circuit, 2018Azerbaijan GP qualifying in pictures“On my first actual attempt I clipped the wall very lightly but it punctured the tyre,” he said. “I only realised this as I went through the high-speed left.

“I braked very abruptly, I realised I had a problem, I was trying to understand. And then through the blind corner Pierre came very quickly and I completely got in the way.

“I didn’t know what way to go initially because if I was on the right side I would be in the way later and if I was on the left I could also be in the way for the braking. In the end it looked very amateurish, I apologised to him and the team.”

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2018 F1 season

Browse all 2018 F1 season articles