Nico Rosberg was involved in a high speed crash today at the Pirelli tyre test at Sakhir International Circuit, Bahrain. A prototype tyre failed and caused the German to veer off the track and into the tyre wall.
Pirelli have used the three day test with Red Bull Racing, Ferrari, Scuderia Toro Rosso and Mercedes to test a number of prototype tyres to determine which way to go for the design of the eventual 2014 tyres.
The Italian tyre supplier in the meantime released a statement, saying that the failed tyre type will not be used again, and that findings of investigation into the failure will be passed on to the teams and the FIA.
"The tyre tests in Bahrain regarded a number of prototypes, which were completely innovative in terms of structure and compounds, with the aim of developing the most suitable solutions for the next season."
"This morning Nico Rosberg’s Mercedes was fitted with one of these prototypes, a tyre which had only been tested in the laboratory and which will not be proposed again."
Essentially, the Bahrain test was approved at the most recent Motorsport Council in Paris on the grounds of safety following complaints by Pirelli that it was impossible for them to develop reliable tyres for 2014 without testing with modern machinery. As such, 2013 cars were run by 4 teams whereas the other 7 teams declined on the opportunity.
The three day test started on 17 December and is now completed. The first time F1 cars will be back on track will be at Jerez on 28 January where some teams will likely already run 2014 cars.