Alpine driver Esteban Ocon has insisted it was "impossible" to have seen Red Bull's Sergio Perez drawing alongside Nico Hulkenberg's Haas when the trio crashed in the Qatar Grand Prix Sprint.
The Frenchman was forced to defend position in the second half of the 19-lap event as his Soft tyres, which had proven to be rewarding early in the stint, began to struggle for grip.
The Medium-clad Haas and Red Bull began to close and on the exit of Turn 1, both Hulkenberg and Perez drew level.
As Ocon focused on the German's positioning heading to Turn 2, contact was made and sent the A523 spinning into Perez on the outside, leaving both cars in the gravel and out of the Sprint whilst Hulkenberg retired once returning to the pits.
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Detailing the incident, Ocon told media including RacingNews365.com: "My race started well, we had the Soft tyres so we made up some good places from P10 to P7, good fights with Fernando also.
"But we were dropping back and more on the defensive side than the attacking since.
"We had that incident when we were three abreast, I had a touch on the rear right and the next thing I see when I open my eyes is that I am in the gravel.
"An unfortunate incident but I am sure we can catch back [in the race] with the learning we have with the strategy and we can score points.
"It is clear that I saw Nico, I knew he was there, but it was impossible for me to see Sergio.
"Three abreast is not a good idea, so it is a racing incident."