Cause of Lewis Hamilton’s brake failure still unknown

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Brembo and Mercedes have released a joint statement confirming that they are yet to find the cause of Lewis Hamilton’s brake failure during qualifying for the German Grand Prix last weekend.

During the first stage of qualifying, Hamilton crashed in the final sector with some force after his front-right brake disc failed. The Briton walked away unharmed, but was forced to start the race from 20th on the grid. He eventually rallied to come home in third place, although he did lose more ground to championship rival and teammate Nico Rosberg, the eventual race winner.

In a statement, both Brembo and Mercedes underlined their commitment to resolving the issue despite not finding a reason for his crash yet.

“Following the accident experienced by Lewis Hamilton last Saturday at Hockenheim, Brembo and Mercedes have been working hand in hand to analyse and identify the causes of the failure,” it reads.

“There is currently no clear evidence of a single cause of failure and our continuing rigorous analysis will take into account multiple factors which could have contributed to the incident. The results of this technical analysis will be communicated as soon as they are available.

“Formula 1 is a domain of advanced development where technologies are pushed to their limits and in which strong partnerships are crucially important. Brembo and Mercedes remain committed to a close working relationship in the future.”

Hamilton finished fastest in both of today’s practice sessions for the Hungarian Grand Prix, and is chasing an unprecedented fifth victory at the Hungaroring this weekend.

Theriault clinches ARCA title before finale at Kansas

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KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) There is no long, convoluted story about how Austin Theriault came to Ken Schrader Racing, forging a team that so dominated the ARCA Series that it captured the title simply by showing up for the finale.

“We both wanted something to do,” the folksy Schrader said with a smile and shrug before Friday night’s race at Kansas Speedway. “He didn’t have a car to drive and I didn’t have a driver.”

So, they solved each other’s problem.

Theriault hopped into the seat and proceeded to win seven times over the first 19 races, building such a lead on his nearest challenger that he sewed up the title at Kentucky. And that made for a rather enjoyable weekend at Kansas, where all the pressure was off their team.

Along the way, Theriault became the first driver to win at a superspeedway, short track, dirt track and road event in the same season, and he swept the superspeedway and short-track challenges.

If there was something to win, he won it.

“I hoped we’d have a shot at it and it’s proved out this year that we’ve really exceeded anybody’s expectations,” Theriault said. “We had some things to work on early. We kind of dusted off a bit, went back to work. We had some time between Daytona and the mile-and-a-halfs that came up later in the season, and we realized where we were strong and where we had to work.

“But in the end it came back to pure dedication, I think,” he explained. “The amount of time it took behind the scenes to make this happen.”

The 23-year-old driver from Fort Kent, Maine, knows something about dedication. He appeared to be on racing’s fast track, scoring a Truck Series ride a few years ago for Brad Keselowski, when a terrifying crash at Las Vegas left him with a broken back and sitting on the sidelines.

The best ride he could find last year was in the K&N Pro Series.

It was at a trade show in Indianapolis last December that Theriault ran into Schrader, who was busy putting together a team for this season. They had dinner a couple nights later and, Schrader said, it was his wife Ann who came away impressed by the yes-sir, no-sir driver.

“My wife doesn’t go to all the races,” Schrader said. “After we talked she said, `I like that guy. How good is he?’ She doesn’t know. I knew he was racing well in Keselowski’s truck, had an unfortunate wreck, had to sit out a bit. I told her, `That’s somebody who could make us very happy next year.”‘

Theriault delivered on that promise.

They weren’t the only ones happy Friday, either. Zane Smith earned his second pole of the season, beating teammate Sheldon Creed to earn the top spot for the Kansas ARCA 150, while 20-year-old Natalie Decker announced a full-time ride with Venturini Motorsports next season.

“This is obviously a big step in my career,” said Decker, who made six starts as a rookie this season. “I’m confident and ready for this next move. After tonight my focus shifts to next season. We’ll be ready to go at Daytona.”