Formula 1

Mercedes’ Melbourne One To Forget As Both Drivers Retire

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Mercedes GP's nightmare weekend was topped off as both drivers were forced to retire from the opening race of the season in Australia.

Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg were both hit by other cars in separate incidents, causing fatal damage to their cars.

Mercedes' pre-season testing pace had suggested they could be battling for podiums but a poor qualifying put them in the midfield and this proved costly in the race.

Seven-time world champion Schumacher was hit in the first corner which punctured his left rear and damaged his floor and Rosberg's radiator was broken after an over-ambitious overtaking move by Rubens Barrichello, which the stewards penalised him for.

Team principal Ross Brawn was disappointed with the weekend from start to finish and hopes that they can improve for Malaysia in two weeks.

He said: “This has obviously been a very frustrating weekend for our team. Michael’s race was spoilt almost immediately with a collision which eventually caused sufficient damage to force us to retire the car.”

“Nico was running reasonably well, however an over-ambitious move from Rubens, which the stewards also agreed with, brought his race to an end.”

“It’s a disappointing end to a disappointing first weekend of the season. We will demonstrate our strength as a team, put this race behind us, regroup and go forward from here.”

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