16 May 2012

McLaren offer help to Williams after garage fire

6:43 am on 16 May 2012

McLaren have offered assistance to their Formula One rivals Williams after fire swept through the team's garage following yesterday's Spanish Grand Prix, won by Wiliams' Venezuelan driver Pastor Maldonado.

A McLaren spokesman said their team in England were ready to lend a hand to replace whatever damaged equipment Williams might need to make the starting grid at next weekend's Monaco Grand Prix.

The blaze erupted just as team members had gathered for a victory photograph, and the team founder Frank Williams, who is in a wheelchair, was hurriedly pushed to safety, while Maldonado rescued his injured 12-year-old cousin and carried him the smoke-filled pit lane.

Seven F1 personnel were taken to hospital and a total of 31 needed medical treatment.

Frank Williams said the astonishing response from the teams and other paddock personnel was immediate, unconditional and overwhelming.