Daniel Ricciardo now has the honor of being the first man ever to hit the wall at Baku. Surprisingly to many, he didn’t crash at Turn 8, but found himself in the barriers on the exit of Turn 15 – where the walls are very close.
With just 20 minutes to go – fans and commentators were surprised no one had hit the wall yet because of the many who ran deep into corners with run off areas. Before Ricciardo’s crash the yellow flags had been out a whopping 8 times.
Coming into Turn 15 after a long run from Turns 12, 13 and 14 – Ricciardo took too much speed into the medium speed left hander – which has a large curb directly on the apex. With not enough grip the rear began to slide from him and as he attempted to correct it he ran out of room on exit. The rear of the car smashed the wall hard, ripping his right rear wheel off. The session was red flagged.
But did Daniel Ricciardo foreshadow his own incident? Recently in the racing game world, the much anticipated F1 2016 has been getting a lot of hype after its reveal at Monaco. With interest peaking for Formula One with the brand new Baku circuit, Codemasters released a couple of hot lap videos of the new track in Azerbaijan this morning. Jolyon Palmer and Daniel Ricciardo himself were the two drivers on display – narrating their own laps.
In Ricciardo’s video, he makes a note when coming into Turn 15 saying, “I think this next corner (Turn 15) you can really win a lot of time if you get it right” Creepy coincidence I think. You can watch the video below.
But this does also provide a reason as to why such an experienced and good driver as Ricciardo hit the wall first. He knew that if he wanted to be competitive in the circuit which demands a good engine as well as aerodynamics, he had to get that corner right especially. Unfortunately it just went a little south for him.
The crash was the only major one of the session – despite many yellow flags. The teams will be back on track later today for an hour and a half with FP2.