McLaren have confirmed that searing brake temperatures melted the rear suspension on Lando Norris‘s car at the Canadian Grand Prix, causing an eye-catching retirement for the rookie driver. Norris lasted just eight laps in Montreal, before he suffered the failure.
Norris had qualified eighth in Canada and held his own in an early-race battle with the displaced Red Bull of Max Verstappen.
However, the teenager’s race was soon run as he trundled down the pit straight with his right-rear tyre at an unnatural angle, prompting immediate suspicion of contact with the ‘Wall of Champions’ at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
It was swiftly revealed that Norris had made no contact with the barriers, instead his DNF was put down to an altogether more bizarre occurrence.
“We had high temperatures in the brakes,” a team spokesman told Motorsport.com. “That caused a component failure, which basically created a localised fire.
“Because it was in an area where there isn’t any air flow, it didn’t get extinguished, and basically we exceeded the temperatures that carbon can withstand, and effectively that led to the suspension giving way.
“We’re clear about what happened, so it’s not an ongoing issue – it was a singular event.”