Wolff: It was a really tough day

Andover Advertiser: Susie Wolff's moment of Formula One history was all too brief due to a technical problem with her Williams Susie Wolff's moment of Formula One history was all too brief due to a technical problem with her Williams

Susie Wolff made Formula One history on Friday - although it only lasted 20 minutes.

Wolff became the first woman for 22 years to take part in a Formula One weekend, and only the sixth overall, when she rolled a Williams out of the garage at the start of first practice session for the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

But in front of a 70,000-strong crowd and with various messages of support dotted around the Northamptonshire track, Wolff's moment in the spotlight was over all too quickly.

After completing just four laps, with one timed that very briefly put her top of the timesheet, an oil pressure problem forced her to pull off the circuit.

At that stage it appeared there would be no chance of the stranded car being recovered, only for Williams' morning to take a shocking turn for the worse when Felipe Massa crashed coming out of Stowe.

In a mirror-image accident of a second practice shunt a year ago at this event whilst with Ferrari, Massa ran wide through Stowe.

That forced the Brazilian into a spin across the track before ramming into a barrier and coming to a stop at the entrance to the pit lane.

That brought out the red flags and with it the opportunity for the recovery vehicles to also collect Wolff's car, as well as that of Massa.

However, once back in the garage, the team soon discovered the issue could not be fixed in time to send Wolff back out.

Offering her thoughts on her disappointment, Wolff said: "It was a really tough day, but that's Formula One sometimes.

"We had an oil pressure problem which cut the engines, and the guys are looking at getting it fixed for free practice two (when Valtteri Bottas will take up the wheel).

"I want to say a huge thank you for all the support. It means a lot and really helps. It was wonderful.

"Going out there was the best feeling, and although there's been a lot of media around this run, once I put the helmet on that was the best feeling.

"As soon as I left the pit lane, everything felt good. Unfortunately it was a short run, but I'm going to look forward to Hockenheim."

That was reference to the fact Wolff will get a second bite of the cherry in first practice for the German Grand Prix in a fortnight's time.

Wolff ultimately finished 21st on the timesheet, nearly nine seconds down on Mercedes' Nico Rosberg, with only Pastor Maldonado below her, but without a time due to technical problems with the Lotus.

At the head of affairs again were the Mercedes pair of championship leader Rosberg and home hero Lewis Hamilton, with 0.739secs between the pair.

Rosberg, 29 points clear of Hamilton in the drivers' standings, set a time of one minute 35.424secs, comfortably quicker than the Briton.

Hamilton was fastest in sector one, but had to slow down for yellow flags as Caterham's Marcus Ericsson had beached his car on a kerb.

Fernando Alonso was third best, and the only other driver to finish within a second of Rosberg, with the Spaniard 0.839secs back in his Ferrari.

Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo was fourth fastest, but 1.199secs adrift, with team-mate Sebastian Vettel sixth, either side of the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen.

They were followed by Jenson Button in his McLaren, but 1.5secs down, with the top 10 completed by the Toro Rosso duo of Daniil Kvyat and Jean-Eric Vergne, and then the second McLaren of Kevin Magnussen.

Marussia's Max Chilton was down in 18th, 4.390secs off the pace.

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