As Button completed his third lap around the Jerez circuit, the redesigned MP4-28 sputtered to a halt 10 minutes into testing with suspected fuel delivery problems.
The 2009 world champion helped team workers cover the car before a truck arrived to transport it back to the pits. By early afternoon he’d yet to complete a competitive lap.
Nico Rosberg, Hamilton’s teammate at his new outfit Mercedes, suffered a more spectacular car failure as a flash of flames followed by smoke erupted from the rear of his Silver Arrow, having just set a lap time of 1 minute, 20.3 seconds.
By Douglas Holtz-Eakin
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