Free Practice 1 for the Malaysian Grand Prix was red-flagged this morning for fifteen minutes after Kevin Magnussen’s Renault caught fire as it was being pushed into the garage.
Magnussen completed an installation lap and came back into the pits for further checks on the car, reports Motorsport.com. The team started to push the car back into the garage, but flames burst out from under the engine cover.
The fire blazed on for several minutes as several marshals and team members tried to put it out with fire extinguishers. The team also worked to pump fuel out of the car so as to further starve the blaze.
Renault Technical Director Nick Chester told Reuters that a leaky fuel breather line caused the blaze:
There was a problem with a valve on a fuel breather pipe which meant that fuel escaped from the vent, causing a fire.
The team was testing a new fuel system on Magnussen’s car ahead of next month’s high-altitude Mexican Grand Prix, reports Reuters.
No one was hurt in the blaze—even Magnussen, who had to be pulled from inside—however, the Renault pits were a mess and the car was damaged by the blaze, most notably some of its electrical loom.