Susie Wolff's F1 weekend debut halted after just four laps by engine failure
But stoical Scot hoping it will be "my day" next time out in Germany
By James Galloway at Silverstone. Last Updated: 04/07/14 2:17pm
Claire Williams reflects on a disappointing day for Susie Wolff, who after much media attention was unable to complete more than two laps of the Silverston
Susie Wolff’s long-awaited grand prix weekend bow – the first for a female driver in two decades - proved to be over almost before it had even begun at Silverstone on Friday after a engine failure struck her Williams car after just four laps.
The 31-year-old former DTM driver became just the sixth woman in F1 history, and the first since Italian Giovanna Amati attempted to qualify for three races in 1992, to take part in a race weekend when she took to the track in Practice One on the opening morning of the British GP.
However, after weeks of build-up and preparation two years on from her first run in an F1 car at the same circuit, the luckless Scot completed just one full flying lap before being forced to park her FW36 in the run-off area at Vale corner when the car developed oil pressure problems which shut off its Mercedes engine.
“It's a pretty terminal problem," Wolff told Sky Sports F1 after returning to the garage to discover the bad news. "But I hope the guys get it ready for Valtteri [Bottas] in P2."
But although her big day turned into a damp squib - regular race driver Valtteri Bottas returns to the car for P2 - Wolff attempted to remain upbeat, saying she enjoyed the brief experience and was looking forward to more running when she returned to the car in P1 at the German GP in two weeks’ time
“It felt so good out there,” the development driver said. “As much as there has been a lot of media scrutiny about me running, ultimately when I am in the car that is the best feeling. It was only one and a half laps but I’ll look forwards to more laps in Hockenheim.
"It wasn’t my day today, but I’ll keep my head up and working hard and make sure that in Hockenheim it will be my day.”
Deputy Team Principal Claire Williams backed Wolff to overcome the disappointment of her truncated Silverstone Friday.
"So heartbroken for her. But Susie has great bounce back capability," Williams told Sky F1.
"Of course she was upset after the session but she’s put so much work into today’s event. In Germany she’s going to be going to be in the car in P1 then and she’s got to look forward and focus on that. But this is sometimes what happens in Formula 1."
Friday morning’s session at Silverstone ultimately turned into one to forget for both sides of the Williams garage after Felipe Massa crashed heavily after running wide at Stowe.
Two weeks on from the team’s front-row lockout and their best points-paying race result for nine years in Austria, the two Williams cars completed a combined total of just 11 laps on the opening morning of their home grand prix.
Watch the 2014 British GP live on Sky Sports F1. Extensive coverage of the Silverstone race weekend begins with Friday Practice from 9.45am on July 4.