Mercedes reveal cause of George Russell crash after abrupt testing end

Thomas Maher
George Russell taking part in testing in Abu Dhabi to conclude the F1 2023 season.

George Russell on Mercedes testing duties.

George Russell’s crash during testing in Abu Dhabi has resulted in the team calling off the last few hours of track time.

A suspected component failure on Russell’s Mercedes W14 resulted in the British driver making contact with the barriers at Turn 6 with just under five hours of track time left on the final day of testing.

The one-day Pirelli tyre test at Yas Marina had Russell carrying out testing duties to wrap up his and the team’s year, until he brought out the red flags just at the beginning of the unofficial lunch hour.

George Russell brings out the red flags in Abu Dhabi

The car was brought back to the pits on the back of a truck where, despite it initially appearing like a simple stoppage, it became evident that there was damage to the right-front corner of the W14.

Mercedes has since confirmed to that a component failure was to blame for the incident, and an investigation is underway to narrow down what exactly failed.

Russell had completed 58 laps at the time of the failure, the length of a Grand Prix distance, over the course of the day’s running.

Aside from Russell’s dramas, it’s been a relatively nondescript day of F1 testing. Theo Pourchaire’s day was particularly slow to get going as Alfa Romeo struggled with a technical issue on his car during the morning, but the French driver has since reached a reasonable 60 laps on the board.

The morning session was initially delayed by 25 minutes due to the Medical Helicopter not showing up in time for the planned 9am start, while there was a separate 24-minute stoppage due to a water leak on track under the W Hotel bridge in the final sector.

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