While Jarno Trulli managed to seemingly turn the tide of bad luck befalling him the Heikki Kovalainenother way with a solid drive to 17th at the Spanish Grand Prix, it appears that the other side of the coin fell team-mate Heikki Kovalainen’s way.

The Finn was stranded before the parade lap got underway when his Lotus’ gearbox alternated between selected first gear and trying to re-elect Gordon Brown as Prime Minister.

The former Renault and McLaren driver was hurriedly pushed back into the pit lane in the hope of rectifying the problem, but poor Heikki never drove a lap in anger and was registered as a non-starter.

We had a gearbox problem while we were firing up on the grid," Heikki bemoaned. "The gearbox selected two gears at once – there was some sort of software issue which caused it to fail. It’s unfortunate, because we have had such a good weekend, but these things happen."

Team-mate Trulli was able to bring the heavily upgraded T127 home in 17th place, registering his first proper race finish of the season – his previous classifications at Bahrain and Sepang have both been at the wheel of a seriously stricken car.

"I’m pleased we finished comfortably ahead of Virgin, even though the car felt a bit difficult to drive today," the Italian commented. "I don’t really know why but it didn’t feel the same as it did on Friday – despite that we achieved what we set out to today, showed good race pace and finished well."

[Original image via GP Update]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.