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Motor Racing

Lewis Hamilton crash: Hamilton crashes out of German Grand Prix qualifying in the latest dramatic twist in F1 Championship battle

Hamilton appeared to suffer a brake failure on his Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton crashed out of first qualifying in a dramatic accident that hands his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg the advantage in the championship once again at his home grand prix in Hockenheim, Germany.

Hamilton had set the second fastest time of the first session with Rosberg struggling at the bottom of the timesheet following a scrappy lap that saw him over six seconds off the pace. But when Hamilton entered the stadium complex towards the end of the lap, he appeared to have a brake failure that sent him spinning into the tyre barrier at relatively high speed.

The British driver had come through the Mobil 1 corner when he braked for the Sachs hairpin, but his Mercedes immediately spun around with the rear brakes locking up in an unusual fashion.


Hamilton confirmed on the radio that he was ok, although he sounded slightly out of breath after the impact, and blamed a brake failure for the crash that now seriously handicaps him ahead of Sunday’s German Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton hits the barrier at the Sachs hairpin in Hockenheim

Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes is dragged out of the barrier at the Sachs hairpin

Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes is taken away on the back of a lorry after crashing out of Q1

Providing his team can repair the car, Hamilton will start 16th tomorrow afternoon – unless the stewards are forced into action later today – and it is a stark contrast to Hamilton’s fortunes a fortnight ago. Having seen Rosberg grind to a halt, Hamilton went on to win his second British Grand Prix of his career at Silverstone, and cut Rosberg’s championship lead to just four points heading into this weekend.

Mercedes quickly confirmed that Hamilton's suspicions had been correct as he had suffered a "right front brake disc failure" and added on their Twitter account: "Lewis Hamilton is back from the medical centre. He's ok but sore from the crash. We are working to diagnose the cause #GermanGP #F1."