It is motorsport’s ultimate sin and the equivalent of scoring an own goal during football: colliding with your teammate. It’s something that has left many drivers red faced and many cars beyond repair. Here’s a collection of inner-team drama through several decades of Formula One racing.
Alex Caffi & Andrea de Cesaris (BMS Scuderia Italia) – 1989 United States Grand Prix
The BMS Scuderia Italia outfit and Alex Caffi were to collect a rare points finish in 1989. When Caffi was to lap his teammate, de Cesaris turned in, putting Caffi into the wall and out of the race. The Italian would later say he simply had not seen Caffi.
Sebastian Vettel & Mark Webber (Red Bull) – 2010 Turkish Grand Prix
The rivalry between Vettel and Webber reached a new high during the Turkish Grand Prix of 2010. A salient detail was that the team management mostly blamed Webber for the accident.
Nick Heidfeld & Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber) – 2007 European Grand Prix
While Markus Winkelhock famously started the race on dry tyres, and before the chaos that was caused by the rain, Heidfeld and Kubica collided their BMW’s. Both could continue, finishing in 6th and 7th place.
Nick Heidfeld & Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber) – 2007 Malaysian Grand Prix
Earlier that same year, Heidfeld and Kubica got together at the first corner at Sepang. There wasn’t any drama this time, as Kubica lost a bit of his wing endplate and Mario Theissen bit his lip.
Clay Regazzoni & Niki Lauda (Ferrari) – 1975 Spanish Grand Prix
This was a the dangerous Montjuïc circuit, in one of the most tragic race weekends of Formula 1, were five spectators died. At the start, Mario Andretti’s Parnelli was hit by Vittorio Brambilla’s March. Andretti in turn hit Lauda’s Ferrari, who swerved in front of Regazzoni. Lauda was out instantly, as Regazzoni had to pit for repairs.
Clay Regazzoni & Niki Lauda (Ferrari) – 1976 British Grand Prix
Regazzoni, from fourth on the grid, made a stellar start and then went for a gap that was closed teammate Lauda. The two touched and both cars were damaged. Regazzoni then did a good job of spinning in front of Lauda’s rival James Hunt. The aftermatch of the accident (and the restart of the race) was long debated, and a big part of the 2013 movie Rush.
Alain Prost & Ayrton Senna (McLaren) – 1989 Japanese Grand Prix
Talking about Suzuka 1989 is like opening a can of worms. Enough has been said about this notorious race that gave Prost his third title, but a list of teammate-collisions wouldn’t be complete without this monumental crash.
Bertrand Gachot & Ukyo Katayama (Larrousse) – 1992 Canadian Grand Prix
The colourful Larrouse-Lamborghini cars got together at the hairpin of Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. “Nice one, Bertrand”, as commentator John Watson put it.
Bertrand Gachot & Ukyo Katayama (Larrousse) – 1992 Japanese Grand Prix of 1992
Again Gachot drove into his Larrousse teammate, this time at the Japanese Grand Prix. As Murray Walker put it, “this is a duplicate of the Prost & Senna accident’, albeit it with two slightly-less talented drivers.”.
Jean Alesi & Gerhard Berger (Ferrari) – 1993 Italian Grand Prix
Alesi drove four Italian Grand Prix for Ferrari, but would never finish one. This however, was a crash with Berger during qualifying for the 1993 edition of the race at Monza.
Jean Alesi & Gerhard Berger (Ferrari) – 1995 Italian Grand Prix
Maybe this doesn’t count as a collision. Alesi was leading the race, trailed by Berger, when the Frenchman lost his onboard camera. Berger hit it and damaged his car, causing him to retire. To dispair of the Tifosi, Alesi had to retire later, and Johnny Herbert won the race for Benetton.
Jenson Button & Lewis Hamilton (McLaren) – 2011 Canadian Grand Prix
McLaren sure does seem to feature a lot on this list. Hamilton, after getting a firm squeeze, touched Button and subsequently the wall. Jenson probably never knew Hamilton was there, as he went on to win THAT race.
David Coulthard & Mika Hakkinen (McLaren) – 1996 Portuguese Grand Prix
At the Gancho corner of the Estoril circuit, both McLaren drivers made sure they would both finish just outside of the points.
Andrea de Cesaris & Bruno Giacomelli (Alfa Romeo) – 1982 Austrian Grand Prix
Alfa Romeo, in one of their last seasons in F1, had a poor beginning of the race at Zeltweg in 1982, ending the races of de Cesaris and Giacomelli after mere meters.
David Coulthard & Mika Hakkinen (McLaren) – 1999 Austrian Grand Prix
David and Mika were at it again in 1999. Here’s Coulthard having a look down the insid with half an overtake, which almost cost his teammate the championship.
Jean Alesi & Nick Heidfeld (Prost) – 2000 Austrian Grand Prix
Like McLaren, also the A1 Ring seems to feature a lot on this list, probably due to its tight right-handers. In 2000, the Prost team was fighting with Minardi over last place. Veteran Jean Alesi collided with rookie Nick Heidfeld.
Juan Pablo Montoya & Ralf Schumacher (Williams) – 2002 United States Grand Prix
At only the second lap of the race, Schumacher got squeezed by Montoya, span and hit Montoya with his rear-wing. Best part? The Williams mechanic who had seen enough.
Juan Pablo Montoya & Ralf Schumacher (Williams) – 2004 European Grand Prix
Montoya locked up and slid into Schumacher at the start of the 2004 race at the Nurburgring. Montoya could continue on his way to a single-point finish, while Schumacher was left to retire.
Tiago Monteiro & Christijan Albers (Midland) – 2006 Monaco Grand Prix
The Midland drivers got together just meters after the start, causing Monteiro to lose his front-wing.
Tiago Monteiro & Christijan Albers (Midland) – 2006 Canadian Grand Prix
The Midland boys got together again at the hairpin of the Canadian Grand Prix, during the first lap of the race. Monteiro continued and finished the race, albeit being four laps down. Albers retired.
Nico Rosberg & Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – 2014 Belgian Grand Prix
The two Mercedes drivers lost the race going into Les Combes on the second lap. Rosberg lost a bit of his front wing, while Hamilton punctured his rear tyre.
Nico Rosberg & Mark Webber (Williams) – 2006 Brazilian Grand Prix
Rosberg got into the back of Webber’s Williams going into turn four at the opening lap of the race. Both cars were damaged, and while Webber limped to the pits, Rosberg put it into the wall at the final corner. Webber furiously radioed home about Rosberg, giving him the nickname ‘Brittney’.
Ralf Schumacher & Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan) – 1997 Argentinian Grand Prix
With two wheels on the grass, Ralf Schumacher barged Jordan teammate Fisichella out of his way en route to his first podium in Formula 1 (in only his third race!).
Ralf Schumacher & Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan) – 1997 Luxembourg Grand Prix
The old turn one at the (new) Nurburgring was feared because of lap-one accidents, just ask Pedro Diniz. Schumacher squeezed Fisichella and the two touched. As the field stormed away, only the yellow Jordan cars were left stranded in the gravel trap.
Jacques Villeneuve & Ricardo Zonta (BAR) – 2000 German Grand Prix
With a slight nudge, Zonta (out of the picture in the video) send his teammate Villeneuve into multiple spins at turn one of the old Hockenheim circuit. Both cars could continue, although Zonta would later bin it again, all by himself.
Kimi Raikkonen & Juan Pablo Montoya (McLaren) – 2006 United States Grand Prix
The McLaren boys triggered the crash that send Nick Heidfeld rolling, at the start of the 2006 Formula 1 race at Indianapolis
Takuma Sato & Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan) – 2002 Malaysian Grand Prix
Fisichella had his fair share of teammates who knocked him out of the race. On the second lap of the race at Sepang of 2002, it was Sato who ran into the back of him. “I am really sorry about what happened,” said Sato after the race, “I apologized to Giancarlo immediately after the race and he took it very well which I think says a lot of good things about his character” he added.
Takuma Sato & Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan) – 2002 European Grand Prix
Fisichella returned the favour at the first corner of the newly designed first sector of the Nurburgring, nudging Sato and himself backwards. Both could continue, but Fisichella would retire due to the damaged sustained, while Sato would finish down the order in 16th place, 2 laps down.
James Hunt & Jochem Mass (McLaren) – 1977 Canadian Grand Prix
Hunt was to lap Mass, but the two collided after a misunderstanding. Hunt didn’t take it very well, waiting a lap to raise his fist to Mass, then punching a marshall (for which he was fined $2,750).
Pierluigi Martini & Christian Fittipaldi (Minardi) – 1993 Italian Grand Prix
Martini and Fittipaldi got together and Fittipaldi did a perfect back-flip, as both the Minardi cars would finish the race, and since the race had only a couple of meters left to run, both did so without losing a position.
Derek Warwick & Patrick Tambay (Renault) – 1984 Monaco Grand Prix
In rainy conditions the 1984 race produced a tight start with barely any vision through the spray. René Arnoux and Derek Warwick battled, as Warwick lost it, teammate Patrick Tambay had nowhere to go and both were out of the race. Both Renault drivers suffered leg injuries, causing Tambay to miss the next race in Canada.
Gianni Morbidelli & Pierluigi Martini (Minardi) – 1991 Spanish Grand Prix
This didn’t start as a teammate collision, but it sure ended as one. Alex Zanardi, in the Jordan-Ford, was battling a bit too hard with Morbidelli in the Minardi-Ferrari. Both lost control and Morbidelli then hit his teammate. Martini could still limp the car back to the finish.
Heinz-Harald Frentzen & Jarno Trulli (Jordan) – 2000 Italian Grand Prix
Frentzen collided, sort of at the same instant, with Barrichello and Trulli, at the opening lap at the second chicane. In the chaos that followed, David Coulthard, Johnny Herbert and Pedro de la Rosa were all eliminated too. A marshal, Paolo Ghislimberti, was killed when he was hit by Trulli’s left-rear tyre.
Derek Daly & Jean-Pierre Jarier (Tyrrell) – 1980 Monaco Grand Prix
Irish driver Daly collided with Bruno Giacomelli’s Alfa Romeo, and then managed to land on top of his teammates car. Both Candy-sponsored Tyrrell’s were instantly out of the race, as was Giacomelli and Prost with his McLaren.