Red Bull are investigating a failure in their refuelling system after Mark Webber stopped on track during qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix.
“We’ve got an issue with the fuel collector,” explained team principal Christian Horner. “By the looks of things it’s either the collector or the fuel bowser. Basically collector pressure dropped out right at the end of that in-lap.”
“Until we get the car back and further investigate both the car and the bowser we won’t have any more answers.”
“It’s annoying more than anything but we’ll deal with it,” he added. “The good thing with the race here, particularly with the strategies, is it is open. Mark’s demonstrated the year before last he can come from a lowly grid position and still be right up there by the end of the race.”
Webber said he was unable to do anything about the problem when it struck: “I knew about 30 seconds beforehand that we had a problem with the fuel pressure. I couldn’t get the car back to the pits so the guys were running me through the last 30 seconds in terms of what was the right procedure.
“In the end qualifying was over before it really started so that was a disappointing thing for us. Yesterday went very well, this morning went well as well so we’re getting the maximum out of what we have. Really enjoyed driving the car here but it wasn’t to be.
Webber admitted his frustration at the fault which left him 14th on the grid: “It’s just disappointing that all the work that goes into it, all of the guys and this is absolutely 80%… the race is everything but this is an important part of the weekend to get right.”
“We’ve been doing such a good job until this last half an hour and it slips through the net. We need to understand why it happens and of course we’ll make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
Update: Webber has been sent to the back of the grid for stopping on the track with insufficient fuel in his car to return to the pits:
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