Hill sets record at Estoril

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The Independent Online
A day after being banned from driving for speeding, Damon Hill shattered the course record at Estoril, while Nigel Mansell's testing came to a sudden halt when his car hit a barrier.

Hill, driving the new Williams-Renault, became the first driver to go round the Portuguese circuit under 1min 22sec when he clocked 1:21.77 yesterday.

Mansell, behind the wheel of the McLaren-Mercedes, recorded 1:24.67 before crashing off the circuit when his right suspension snapped. The 41-year- old Mansell, driving the car in public for the first time, skidded off a bend and crashed into a barrier. The accident happened as he was rounding a corner before the pit straight. McLaren mechanics changed a damaged front right suspension arm on the spot, before pushing the car back to the pits with Mansell at the wheel.

With the season's first grand prix in So Paulo, Brazil, three weeks away, many Formula One teams have been using this track outside Lisbon to test the car safety modifications which are required by new FIA rules.