Hamilton crash confirmed as rim failure
May 11, 2010
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The cause of Lewis Hamilton's crash has been confirmed as rim failure
Martin Whitmarsh today confirmed that the crash for Lewis Hamilton near the end of the Spanish Grand Prix was caused by rim failure.
Lewis was running second on the penultimate lap, when his front right tyre failed, and he crashed into the barriers at Turn 3. He was fine, but it threw away the opportunity for McLaren drivers to be running 1-2 in the drivers’ standings. Since then, the cause of the crash has been confirmed as rim failure.
On the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes phone-in, Whitmarsh said that the team are still investigating the crash:
"We flew the parts back yesterday and had Bridgestone here. We do
not believe that the deflation was caused by a puncture or tyre
failure. From all the evidence it looks like the rim failed which
The rim failure is being investigated. It could be debris related,
it could be an issue of deflection, it could be an issue of
tightness or lack of in the wheel nut allowing some flexing.
So what we know is, the rim failed, probably human error somewhere
in that process caused that, which led to deflation and the
Another tyre failure for McLaren, and if it was human error, it wouldn’t be the first time. In the Nurburgring 2007, Hamilton crashed heavily in qualifying, because the right front wheel wasn’t properly secured by the mechanics. In Barcelona 2008, Heikki Kovalainen had a horrible smash at Campsa corner, caused by a manufacturing fault on the left front wheel.