Rookie Hawksworth is the Month of May’s first accident at IMS (VIDEO)

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Jack Hawksworth’s first season in the Verizon IndyCar Series has been off to a decent start, but unfortunately for the English rookie, he became the first driver to contact the wall at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval this month.

Hawksworth lost the rear through Turn 3 and hit the outside retaining wall. He emerged unscathed, and was checked, released and cleared to drive. But the No. 98 BHA/BBM with Curb-Agajanian Honda, now adorned in a new livery with new primary sponsor Integrity Energee Drink, was badly damaged.

That put the shortened two-hour practice under yellow. Simon Pagenaud led with the month’s first 226-plus mph lap, a 226.122 in the No. 77 Lucas Oil Honda for Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports.

Once the track goes back to green – repairs needed to be made to the SAFER Barrier – look for KV Racing Technology’s fourth car, the No. 33 Always Evolving Racing Chevrolet, to make its first laps. Sebastien Bourdais will shake James Davison’s car down, per a KVRT team PR rep.

Update: We now have video.

F1 2017 driver review: Sergio Perez

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Sergio Perez

Team: Sahara Force India
Car No.: 11
Races: 20
Wins: 0
Podiums: 0
Best Finish: P4 (Spain)
Pole Positions: 0
Fastest Laps: 1
Points: 100
Championship Position: 7th

While failing to hit the podium as he did in both 2015 and 2016, Sergio Perez once again finished the year as Formula 1’s leading midfield team driver, but faced a greater fight from within Force India in the shape of Esteban Ocon.

Perez has long been knocking on the door of F1’s top teams should an opportunity come up, and 2017 saw him continue his solid if unspectacular form. The dominance of Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari meant any finish higher than seventh was impressive, something he managed to do on five occasions.

But there were some missed opportunities along the way, most significantly in Baku. Force India had been quick all weekend, with Perez charging to sixth on the grid, and when drama struck at the front, he and teammate Ocon were eyeing a podium finish as a minimum.

Contact between the two forced Perez to retire and prompted Ocon to pit for repairs, leaving the team without the top-three finish it targeted heading into the season. With Lance Stroll taking P3 for Williams and Daniel Ricciardo winning the race, a maiden victory for Force India was not out of the realm of imagination.

Perez and Ocon came to blows on a number of occasions, with the final straw coming in Spa when they twice touched on-track, prompting Force India to introduce team orders. Perez finished the year 13 points clear of Ocon in the final standings, meeting his own pre-season target of 100 points, yet the Frenchman had arguably made the bigger impression at Force India through his first full season in F1.

Force India remains the top underdog in F1 with Perez spearheading its charge, but it is difficult to see either taking the final step to becoming true contenders at the front of the field anytime soon, as solid as their displays have been.

Season High: P4 in Spain after retirements for the ‘big three’.

Season Low: Losing a sure-fire podium, if not a win, in Baku after contact with Ocon.