Rio Haryanto was an innocent victim of a first lap collision between Nico Hulkenberg and Esteban Gutierrez, with the Manor Racing driver sustaining race ending damage as a result of being caught up in the incident.
The Indonesian felt he had an excellent start to the Grand Prix at the Sochi Autodrom, and was amongst the midfield runners when the chaos unfolded in front of him, leaving him vulnerable to the carnage that ensued.
“Today I was unlucky and it’s very disappointing, especially after I made such a good start, probably my best of the season so far,” revealed Haryanto.
“I managed to gain a couple of places, however when I got to turn 2 there were lots of cars fighting and the Force India of Hulkenberg spinning but I had nowhere to go. There was contact on the side of the car and quite a bit of damage, which meant I had to stop the car.”
Haryanto is hopeful of a strong weekend in two weeks time at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain to make up for the disappointment of his opening lap retirement in Russia.
“After a good couple of days it’s disappointing to finish the weekend in this way,” said Haryanto. “But looking at the positives I feel we have been more competitive and I’m looking forward to continuing this at the next race in Barcelona.”