Bianchi's accident ends Force India’s day
9 February 2012 – Force India has effectively lost an entire day of running after Jules Bianchi crashed in Jerez on Thursday morning. Although the accident came early on, a certain car part cannot be delivered to the circuit in time. Running should continue normally on Friday.
Just before ten o’clock, less than one hour into the session, Bianchi is believed to have left the pits with Medium compound tyres fitted, immediately raising questions over whether this was a risky decision amid the almost freezing track temperatures. Moments later, the car went off the circuit at Pons corner, bringing out the red flags.
Although the new-for-2012 Force India reserve driver was uninjured and the car was quickly recovered to the pits by marshals, the team has been waiting for a component to land. At 3pm, it confirmed that it would not be running again today. Whether Bianchi made contact with the tyre barriers remains unknown; also unknown is the precise damage to the car, with the front end having been quickly covered with tarpaulin.
The crash comes as a big blow to the team, which has recorded no data today; the incident also deprives Nico Hülkenberg of his first afternoon in the new VJM05.
Bianchi suffers first F1 crash of 2012