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DATE News (chronologically)
03/15/13
f1
Lewis Hamilton unconcerned despite practice crash in Melbourne  
Lewis Hamilton before he crashed trying to keep up with his teammate Nico Rosberg
Lewis Hamilton was unconcerned after being thoroughly wiped by his teammate on the first day of the new season.

Even though he was faster in the morning session the 2008 champion ended the day in seventh, four-tenths of a second and four places down on Nico Rosberg.

Hamilton careered off the circuit in the final minutes of the afternoon session and the German pulled over at nearly the same time with a broken gearbox.

But the signs are positive for the Brackley operation despite their problems as the only team who were fastest at the end of Friday practice were – inevitably – Red Bull.

Sebastian Vettel was nearly three-tenths of a second ahead of his teammate as Mark Webber had a semi-spin after putting a wheel off near the end of the day.

And the Red Bull’s best lap was a significant 0.4s better than the best of the rest although there will be a significant leap in lap times sure to come from Hamilton.

“Overall it was a good day, if perhaps not the smoothest,” he said.

“I'm happy with where we are and to see Nico in third place on the timesheets shows that we're pretty competitive.

“That's a reflection of a great job that everyone has done at the factory and here at the track. I'm looking forward to the rest of the weekend.

Rosberg said he would quickly be able to put his car troubles behind him.

“That was an interesting day for us,” he said.

“There are a lot of new things to learn with the car and we made some good progress over the day. We can certainly be happy with our testing program when you compare where we came from last year.

“My car had a gearbox problem at the end of the second session but these things happen and it doesn't affect us for tomorrow.”

Team boss Ross Brawn was clearly pleased with the day’s activities while new boss Toto Wolff said the crash wouldn't detract from a decent first day on track.

“We had a very good day today until the last five minutes of the second session,” he said.

“Overall it was a very reasonable first day and we were able to get a good picture of the tires and the balance of the car.

“There will be the inevitable late night in the engineering office as we look over today's data and work out how to optimize the car for tomorrow.”

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