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Russell’s car has come to a halt on the track

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Russell has stopped track

George Russell’s stoppage on track has caused the second red flag of F1’s Bahrain pre-season test for Mercedes.

At the middle sector, the Briton got stuck in fourth gear and eventually pulled over to the side of the road at the exit of turn 10.

After a message about a hydraulic failure appeared on his dashboard, Russell faced difficulty in turning the steering wheel. It’s unclear whether the issue is a more serious hydraulic failure or simply a faulty sensor, which would be a less complicated problem to resolve.

With only 90 minutes remaining in the session, the problem could potentially cut short Mercedes’ day, which would be a nightmare scenario for the German automaker.

The evening running towards the end of the session offers a more accurate representation of the race conditions under the floodlights, aligning with the schedule of the Bahrain Grand Prix set to take place next weekend.

As the mechanics work to recover the car, they also have the challenging task of fully covering it, including the floor underneath, in order to prevent curious onlookers from observing any of Mercedes’ technical solutions during the recovery process.

Russell has stopped track

Aston Martin’s Felipe Drugovich caused the first and only other red flag of the test thus far, when he stopped at turn four just nine minutes into the first day.

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Russell’s problem comes after team principal Toto Wolff admitted that the winter period and the start of track running was “mentally challenging” due to the difficulties they encountered with the W13 car.

“It’s mentally challenging to begin with a car that didn’t perform well last year and anticipate improvements,” Wolff said.

He also added, “While it’s exciting to see progress, it’s crucial to ensure that everything is done accurately.”

Russell has stopped track

The hydraulic issue that caused Russell to stop his W14 may not be a major concern at the moment, as it could potentially be resolved by simply replacing a broken sensor.

Nevertheless, both Russell and Mercedes are losing valuable on-track time. In the event that the issue is indeed a faulty sensor, it could be reset quickly, resulting in only a marginal loss of track time relative to other teams.

Russell has stopped track Russell has stopped track Russell has stopped track

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