After Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso collided on lap 1 of the Belgian Grand Prix, the Briton’s car was launched into the air and slammed back into the ground.
Afterwards, a fluid emerging from the back of the car was visible on the onboard cameras of the drivers who were behind him.
Lewis immediately told the team he can feel some damage, and was told by his race engineer Peter Bonnington to “back off, no full load, part throttle, part throttle”.
Soon Bonnington told him to park the car, and his race was over. Smoke could then be seen coming out of the back of his car.
Mercedes has since confirmed that the power unit was returned to the team’s engine factory in Brixworth, so that it can be examined. The spokesperson also added that the power unit was “definitely a concern”.
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Ahead of the Dutch Grand Prix, Lewis provided an update on the engine’s condition.
“They’ve gone through the whole car and they’re doing work on the engine to make sure that we can use it,” the Briton said.
“I think we’ll be able to use it. We won’t be using it this weekend because they’re still repairing pieces from the car. So, we’ll find out soon.”
However, it was not only the car’s condition that was a concern. After the crash Lewis later said that he was “grateful to be still alive and in shape”, because he ‘almost broke his back coming down’.
At Zandvoort he was asked about his physical condition.
“I feel fine. I’ve been doing physio and just stretching, and, fortunately, I’m good,” Lewis concluded.