Famous Pit Stop Mistakes You Cannot Overlook
Let’s face it – pit stops are not always as straight-forward as they should be. What should be a simple car maintenance slot can actually turn out to be a terrifying ordeal, for both the drivers, and mechanics involved. But when it comes to Formula One, its part and parcel of the racing landscape.
From drivers pulling into the wrong teams pitstop, to more horrendous outcomes, such as cars (with drivers inside) catching fire, you name it, it’s happened during the years of F1 racing.
Check out these pit-stop blunders that Max Velocity have listed below, many of which we have no doubt that racing enthusiasts will always remember.
2011- Hungarian Grand Prix
Not many fans had heard the name Jerome d’ Ambrosio until 2011. In his brief F1 racing career, he marked his presence and is remembered for an unexpected pit lane spin at Hungaroring.
Due to the torrential rain that day, the pit lane had become slippery, so while he was taking a turn into the pit, he lost control over the car, which sent one of his mechanics flying as he frantically tried to avoid the onrushing car.
Fortunately, no man or machine was hurt as the car came to a halt. But, it was evident that he had to bear the repercussion of this incident, as towards the end of the season, he was replaced by Charles Pic.
2009- Brazilian Grand Prix
This blunder occurred before the ban on in-race refuelling came into action. Heikki Kovalainen made an early stop to the pit and before the crew had finished refuelling, the flag was raised, and he sped off while the hose was still attached to the car.
Kimi Raikkonen, being close behind, was drenched in the fuel that was spraying out from Kovalainen’s car. The fuel gradually made its way into Kimi’s helmet through an open visor. Frighteningly, this caused the Ferrari driver to be temporarily blind and the car’s highly charged body caught fire.
Regardless of this accident, the driver bravely fought his way through the track and finished the race in the sixth position.
2008- Canadian Grand Prix
Hamilton successfully led the early stages of the Canadian Grand Prix until Adrian Sutil came into the picture.
Hamilton failed to recognise the signal or the red spot and swerved left in order to keep away from the BMW but rammed into Raikkonen’s Ferrari.
Unfortunately, Nico Rosberg repeated the same mistake as Hamilton and rammed into him.
In the end, Hamilton lost the race to Robert Kubica and Kimi Raikkonen.
1994 – German Grand Prix
This is perhaps one of the most shocking pit stop mistakes made, certainly visually. Jos Verstappen pulled into the pit and everything seemed normal.
Suddenly, the entire car was engulfed in fire after fuel spilled over it, with the driver trapped inside the cockpit.
Thankfully, both the Dutch driver and all of his mechanics escaped unharmed, but it could have ended a lot differently if his team had not jumped into action and put out the fire immediately.
So, as you are probably now well aware, F1 racing has a very dangerous side. Watching it on the TV gives us a huge buzz and that is multiplied tenfold for the drivers and their teams during the race.
Not everyone has the stones to put themselves in such dangerous situations though – adrenaline rush or not. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t experience a slice of the same delicious pie as Alonso and Hamilton.
If you’d like to experience a similar thrill, minus the huge threat to your life, then why not get involved in a pit stop challenge instead? Max Velocity provide a truly interactive experience that will make you feel like you’re on the sidelines of those famous F1 tracks, all whilst ensuring you return home unscathed.