Eric Boullier has revealed that a helmet visor tear-off strip was the cause of Fernando Alonso’s brake failure during the Spanish Grand Prix.
The McLaren-Honda driver was forced to retire just before mid-distance at the Circuit de Catalunya, having run off track with his brake temperatures soaring high due to the strip, and then he almost running over his front-jack man as he entered the pits to retire.
“It was a tear-off, and we have video footage that shows this,” said Boullier to Autosport. “It went straight into the brake duct, obstructing the airflow, so there was no more cooling and that was why, in two laps, the temperatures went through the roof.
“The brake fluid boiled and we lost the brakes, so it was a complete fluke the tear-off should get lodged in there.
“To be honest, I remember the same stupid thing happened with Kimi [Raikkonen, when the two of them were together at Lotus], that a tear-off went into the front brake.
“Obviously the drivers need them, but we need to maybe think about how and where we throw them. Maybe we need to think about something for the future.”