Kobayashi clipped Button and Rosberg, eliminating both of his rivals.
Button criticised Kobayashi after the incident, although the Japanese Grand Prix hero said sorry to his victim.
“This is a race to forget. Initially I had a good start but then we were four cars side by side approaching turn three. I had Nico (Rosberg) to the right and Jenson (Button) and Sergio on my left hand side”, he said.
“Someone hit my rear tyre and then it was impossible to control the car, but I had to brake at some point. I didn’t manage to avoid the accident, and I feel very sorry for ruining someone else’s race, and certainly this was not my intention. It was just a very difficult moment and I had nowhere to go but I think it was my mistake”.
Team-mate Sergio Perez lamented a slow pit stop that cost him a shot at sixth place.
“My first stint was really good, despite a little understeer which came from the incident after the start when I damaged the front of the car. But our plan was good and the strategy seemed to work out.”
“Then unfortunately we had a problem at the pit stop and could not recover from it. This was when we lost the race because I dropped behind a group of cars. Nevertheless towards the end it again looked like there was a chance of scoring a point”.
“Today, I think sixth would have been what we could have done in perfect circumstance”.