Jarno Trulli and Adrian Sutil almost came to blows after a chaotic first lap of the Brazilian Grand Prix which benefited championship hopeful Jenson Button.
Toyota driver Trulli was left fuming with Force India’s Sutil after the Italian had attempted a pass around the outside of the German, only for them to collide and send both out of the race.
As Trulli crashed into a wall, Sutil careered across the grass and back onto the track, where he was hit again by the Renault of Fernando Alonso, sending him into retirement.
Trulli confronted Sutil, pointing an accusing finger in the direction of his rival.
It was one of a number of pulsating incidents at the start of the 71-lap race, with Finns Heikki Kovalainen and Kimi Raikkonen also casualties.
Raikkonen lost his front wing and punctured his left rear tyre, whilst Kovalainen spun at the back of the field coming through the opening Senna S.
That forced both men into the pits and there was further drama as Kovalainen exited with the fuel hose still attached to his McLaren.
As he made his way down the pit lane, the stray hose sprayed fuel onto Raikkonen’s car directly behind him, causing a flash fire.
Raikkonen came through it unharmed, whilst Kovalainen pulled over outside the Brawn garage where the team’s mechanics removed the hose.
In all the mayhem, Button had moved up from 14th to ninth by the end of the first lap as the safety car was deployed.
When it came in after four laps, Button was immediately on the attack.
He swiftly passed Romain Grosjean in his Renault and the Williams of Kazuki Nakajima to move up to seventh.
By the end of lap 11, Button’s Brawn GP team-mate Rubens Barrichello was clear of Red Bull’s Mark Webber after making a clean getaway from pole, with BMW Sauber’s Robert Kubica and Nico Rosberg in his Williams third and fourth.