Hamilton’s first test for Mercedes ended by crash

2013 F1 season

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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W04, Jerez, 2013Lewis Hamilton’s first day of testing for Mercedes ended in disappointment.

He crashed after just 15 laps in the car following a fault on the hydraulic brake line at the right-rear. He went into the barrier at Curva Dry Sack, damaging the front-left of the car.

Hamilton was unhurt, but Mercedes later confirmed they would be unable to continue in the day’s test.

It is a second setback for the team after Nico Rosberg’s run yesterday was disrupted by a fire. He managed just 14 laps.

Hamilton was second-fastest at the time of his crash, 0.032 seconds slower than Daniel Ricciardo.

2013 F1 season

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Keith Collantine
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43 comments on “Hamilton’s first test for Mercedes ended by crash”

  1. Wow… All those technical directors are not able to give one technically reliable car… its a shame

    1. They obviously need more!

    2. Too many cooks at Mercedes.

    3. :D The many execs are because of parallel development for 2013/14

      1. I hope that’s what they are for. I am sceptical about Brawn’s comment about the parallel development. I think Bernie pointed out that Brawn might be on his way out.

  2. Shocking start for Mercs, better to iron out all these problems know rather than in the middle of a GP, anyway looking forward to hearing how the car felt for the 15 laps, you can always rely on Hamilton to give honest feedback about the car to the press

  3. It’s actually second crash for Mercedes (including the on saturday)!

  4. Knowing a good run in test could lead to more than 100 laps, the 29 laps in two days are really poor for Mercedes. Already a bad first week of testing!

  5. 2 days testing gone, 29 laps, lots of repairs for the mechanics to make. NOt a great start to the year for Mercedes.

  6. So, HAM left McLaren after a season of mechanical failures and disappointment. More of the same to come?

    1. Atleast they’re happening at the start of pre-season testing and not during the season when hes leading races.

      1. Yet.

        Last year was not good for reliability at Merc. Especially for drivers not named Nico.

  7. Doesn’t phase me too much. Lotus had a good 2012 after the disaster they had in testing a year ago.

  8. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    6th February 2013, 13:50

    Even though it’s only the second day of testing, it’s still not a good start. Thankfully they still have time to catch up.

  9. Its still very early into testing so I’m keeping the faith. In fact, it actually gives me some faith in merc as they have clearly changed a lot on the car hence the problems. I know they were having problems last year but if they brought the car they raced in Brazil to Jerez, for sure it would have lasted more than 29 laps over two days.

    Also, I’d much rather it break and crash now so they have time to find faults and fix them, rather than look great until the final days testing and then have a load of problems develop. Don’t forget, Williams aren’t even using their 2013 car yet.. But people feel their testing is going well. It doesn’t look good yes, but its still way to early to worry about anything.

  10. the mercedes has got a dead rear end.

  11. Obviously it’s not the ideal way to start the year, but then that’s the whole purpose of testing – find out what’s good and what’s not, what’s going to break, and so on. Better for it to fail now than on the 29th lap of Melbourne. It would be a more disappointing start if they had lost time due to driver error, etc, but that’s not the case.

    Don’t forget that these are extremely sophisticated prototypes, being given their first few kms of track time. There’s no way you can reasonably expect nothing to go wrong. I’d be more concerned if they’d been sidelined today by a recurrence of the same issue which they tried to fix yesterday, but this is a new problem, and one I’m sure they’ll overcome.

    At this stage of testing, this is pretty much exactly what it’s all about – shakedown runs using the new components to see if it all works as predicted. They won’t be doing any detailed aero testing at this point, so they’re not really losing an awful lot of data with limited running. If it was the third test then it may be a bit worse.

  12. Better sooner then later

  13. Not a great start, on the other hand I bet they would have loved to have had the technical glitches in testing last year, instead of them ending many races (esp. Schumi’s first half of the year)

  14. Whilst it is not a great start, it is only the second day of testing. It’s better that this kind of thing happens in testing (as it often does) then it happening in the races.

  15. Put it this way. It’s great this is happening now and not in the races.. like Lewis’ McLaren last year. Time will tell if they can sort it out. Teams have comeback from worse, that’s for sure!

  16. Look at it this way… At least he is beating Nico already… at least he got in 1 more lap!! XD

    Sucks that Mercedes are habving all these isues….

  17. Brake failure… Car aside, I suspect they should be pleased that their star driver is not injured.

  18. ok ok his still th best despite the crash,hey let’s my forget lotus started th same way last year and they lotus turned out to be the most reliable car, but slow less motivated drivers let em down. now as for mere they have th full equation from driver to th car and all involved. go mere go.

  19. I am an optimist… this is a small Stumble for Lewis. He will definitely make up for the the precious time loss.

    Go Lewis Go…..

  20. Brake line failure is something you should not be sorting out in testing nor is electrical failure. This does not show good for Mercedes I would think twice about buying a road car from a manufacturer that can’t even get the basics right like electrical and brakes.

  21. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    6th February 2013, 16:01

    It is safe to say that the new Merc model is both on fire and unstoppable!

    Hopefully this was the last crash of the season. If you’re going to crash, testing is the place to do it.

    1. Lol lol lol haha it is safe to say that you nailed it ….. :)

    2. COTD please! :)

    3. COTD hands down. You have won the intranetz, sir.

    4. You realy are the winner of “caption competition” even without a photo !!!

    5. COTD for sure!

    6. Thats the way Brawn and Toto would put it, to put a positive spin on it… great comment

  22. Not the best of starts for Mercedes but I suppose it might be better to have theses problems in testing, and be able to possibly fix them before this sort of thing happens on a race weekend.

  23. Reduces testing time but no indicator of how they’ll be in the season. We’ve seen this in the past.

  24. McLaren and Mercedes, having reliability problem since a long time I couldn’t even remember…

  25. I was thinking about what di Montezemolo said in December at the Ferrari Christmas dinner or whatever it was, where he lamented Eccelstone’s leadership and called for less spending on aero and more mechanical developments that could be transferred to Ferrari’s road cars, but which would have to be developed and refined through in-season testing. Is there any possibility that F1 will come to its senses and return to testing? How can folks not see that as being crucial, not just for car development, but for the development of young drivers and the chance for even veterans to refine some technique outside the simulator, if necessary? I don’t have an opinion on the aero-emphasis vs. not having a properly calibrated wind tunnel, but scrapping the in-season testing ban does make sense to me at least on first pass. Anyone else?

    1. @joepa As Allison was saying yesterday, because they have other tools they can use for testing and development which they already have in their factories:

      2009 was a ripple, 2014 will be a tsunami – Allison

      1. thanks for the link. will check it out!

  26. Well, the team can still potentially recover. Remember McLaren from 2010 (I don’t remember exactly, may have been 2011) where they were experimenting with that radical octo-exhaust and had to completely redesign the exhaust in the span of a couple of weeks? Perhaps Mercedes can iron out all the bugs and get a competitive car…

    In any case, not a great start for them, but you can’t write them off already. We’ll see at the end of testing, or really the end of Q3 in Australia, what the pecking order will really be.

  27. guys , how was merc able to launch their car on a track while red bull launched in a factory . could merc not gain some advantage from running round a track , even if it’s for PR purposes ?

    1. It was a filming day, which all teams are allowed to have. Force India did the same at their launch in Silverstone. McLaren have already had one too (there was a video in the round-up a couple of days ago). I’m sure Red Bull will, if they haven’t already,

  28. JEEZ! When will the madness stop

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