• Chinese Grand Prix

'It happens' says Buemi after high-speed crash

ESPNF1 Staff
April 16, 2010 « Mercedes not optimistic it has closed gap | »
Sebastien Buemi walks away from his massive accident © Getty Images
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Sebastien Buemi shrugged off the high-speed loss of his front wheels during the opening practice session which his Toro Rosso team put down to suspension failure.

Buemi was braking at the end of the long straight when his front wheels flew off leaving him helpless as his car careered into a barrier and game to rest in the gravel trap. But incredibly he was out of the car in seconds and showed no ill effects once the initial shock wore off.

"The track is really wide there, with a lot of run-off space," he said. "It looked quite spectacular, but from inside the car, it was not so big. I just lost both wheels. Afterwards, for me, it took a bit of time to understand what happened, but it was not too bad. Something broke. It happens. We've changed the car and it will be fine to go out again. As a driver, I just don't think about it any more."

"Sebastien's accident this morning was down to a technical problem on the right hand upright, which proved simple to identify once we got the car back," revealed technical director Giorgio Ascanelli. "We have resolved the problem, which the many laps completed by Jaime this afternoon confirms.

"Apart from the upright, the afternoon accident caused some damage to the gearbox and a combination of fixing this problem and changing the front end meant that, despite the best efforts of the mechanics, we could not get Seb out before the end of the day. Fortunately, Jaime did a lot of laps in a trouble free session, after we had stopped him as a precaution towards the end of FP1, until we had identified the problem on his team-mate's car."

Buemi confirmed his only concern was losing out on practice time ahead of qualifying and the race. "I am extremely disappointed that, once again, through no fault of my own, I have been unable to run for almost all of the three hours available. I will have to try and catch up on Saturday morning and we will be relying on Jaime's data from today to see which way to go."