Brake Failure Causes Lewis Hamilton Crash During Test
- Lewis Hamilton crashed after only 15 laps following brake failure in his new Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 W04 on Wednesday.
- "These things happen and it's all part of testing," Hamilton said in a statement on the Daimler Web site.
- Hamilton's new teammate Nico Rosberg also experienced problems with his Mercedes machine.
JEREZ, Spain — Lewis Hamilton crashed after only 15 laps following brake failure in his new Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 W04 on Wednesday.
"These things happen and it's all part of testing," Hamilton said in a statement on the Daimler Web site. "Of course, it's better that we get these small issues out of the way sooner rather than later, and the guys are working really hard to overcome them."
Daimler said in a statement that the F1 W04 suffered a loss of rear brake pressure.
"The front brakes enabled him to slow the car. However, he could not avoid hitting the barrier," it said. "The problem was traced to the hydraulic brake line connecting to the right-rear caliper."
Hamilton's new teammate Nico Rosberg also experienced problems with his Mercedes machine.
On Tuesday, Rosberg — who gave the team its first (and so far only) win last year — placed 8th with a best lap of 1 minute, 20.846 seconds after running only 14 laps before electrical problems caused his car to stall on the circuit, requiring a truck to haul the car back to the pits.
Lotus' Romain Grosjean turned the track in 1:18.218 on Wednesday with the best time. Sergio Perez, Hamilton's replacement at McLaren, was 7th fastest Wednesday at 1:19.572. In his short stint, Hamilton was a tick better than that at 1:19.519.
Paul di Resta was a strong 2nd fastest in his Force India machine at 1:19.003, with Daniel Ricciardo 3rd for Scuderia Toro Rosso at 1:19.134.
Triple reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel is not taking part in this session.
The session continues Thursday and Friday, with two more sessions — February 19-22 and February 28-March 3 — at Barcelona. The season opens March 17 with the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.
Edmunds says: It's hardly a gonzo beginning for Hamilton and his new team. Hamilton's positive attitude is a plus, but the fact is that Mercedes has netted a mere 29 laps of practice — less than 20 percent of most of its competitors. Catching up is hard to do.