Unhurt Grosjean says he didn’t see drain before crash

2017 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Romain Grosjean says he didn’t see the drain cover which caused his crash during the second practice session.

The Haas driver spun into the barriers at turn 13 after colliding with the drain cover at the previous corner. Footage of the incident appears to show the drain cover being raised as Valtteri Bottas and Valtteri Bottas passed by before Grosjean’s car struck it with its right-rear wheel.

Malaysian Grand Prix practice in pictures
“I’m fine, that’s the most important thing,” said Grosjean after being taken from the crash scene in the Medical Car.

“I just seen the footage, apparently a drain came out,” he explained. “I didn’t see anything, it was on the racing line and then suddenly I had a big impact to my rear-right.”

“The next thing I knew my tyre’s not there any more and I’m just spinning and heading for the wall.”

The session was red-flagged and abandoned with 20 minutes left to run so the track could be repaired.

“They’re going to sort things out,” said Grosjean. “It’s a shame because we’ve lost a lot of time running and knowledge with tricky conditions.”

“But hopefully we find a good set-up for tomorrow, we find a bit more performance and the drain strays in place.”

Last year the first practice session for the Monaco Grand Prix was halted due to a similar problem. Jenson Button’s McLaren suffered damage after he hit a drain cover on the circuit. Valtteri Bottas also damaged his car on one in the pits at Baku during final practice for that year’s race.

2017 Malaysian Grand Prix

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    7 comments on “Unhurt Grosjean says he didn’t see drain before crash”

    1. Good to know he is OK, I didnt see the crash. Was it similar to Rubens Barrichello crash from Monaco when a drain cover was sucked in by the car?

      1. Doesn’t really look like it. This time, it seems to be a drainage grille that was damaged by the two preceding cars and then hit by the Haas. This seems to show the incident best https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6JkMkA_wdgU At about 2 minutes in, you can see a track worker carrying a crumpled grille away, and I assume it was that object that got dislodged and hit.

    2. It’s grosbeaks fault, a better driver would have dropped it back a cog, gave it a handful, twice around the roundabout, take his head clean off.
      I was laughing, me mate was laughing. We were all laughing…

    3. Glad both Bottas and Bottas got through ok.

    4. Remember Montoya 2005 Chinese Grand Prix, hit loose drain cover.
      I am curious is the track responsible for paying the damage? I can’t imagine how much it must cost to repair the car?
      Easy 250K dollars? What do you people think the cost is?

    5. Kimi did, saw it, drove around it and reported it to the pits. Which is why he’s still around for another year.

    6. Im sure things like that will be easier to see next year with the Halo…

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