A FERRARI mechanic suffered a double leg fracture at the Bahrain GP after a botched pit-stop saw Kimi Raikkonen released too soon from his marker.
Raikkonen was brought into the pits from third in an attempt to put pressure on Mercedes, but was given the signal to leave his stop when only three of his tyres had been replaced.
As the left rear tyre had not been taken off, when Raikkonen got back on the power he drove into a Ferrari mechanic, who was badly hurt as a stretcher was hurried towards the Scuderia garage.
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The mechanic – named only as Francesco – was taken to hospital for treatment, and the team confirmed he suffered a shinbone and fibula fracture.
WARNING: The video below contains distressing images
Ferrari were handed a 50,000 euro fine by the FIA for the unsafe release at the pit-stop.
Raikkonen was forced to retire because of the incident, and said afterwards: “I don’t know what happened. For sure, it’s not great for him.
“I go when the light is green. I don’t see what happens behind and unfortunately he got hurt. My job is to go when the light says so. Hopefully he’s OK.”
It was the second time across the Bahrain weekend that Ferrari botched a pit-stop after the team were fined for another unsafe release in Practice Two. Their partners, Haas, also had two retirements in similar circumstances at the Australian GP.
Sebastian Vettel went on to hold off both Mercedes to take victory in Bahrain, and paid tribute to the crew member on the podium.
“I’m a bit sad as I think in the pit-stop with Kimi one of our mechanics got injured, so send him my best regards,” he added. “It’s a mixed day.”
Ferrari’s own race report concluded: ‘Out on track, Bottas pursued Sebastian for 20 laps, but our driver never gave him room, even though his tyres were finished. That is Ferrari and that, Francesco, is for you. Hurry back.’
Story originally appeared on Sky Sports