Pastor Maldonado’s much-hyped demonstration run in front of his local Venezuelan fans has ended with the ultimate anticlimax after the Williams driver crashed his car on just his second hot-lap.
It was meant to be a hero’s homecoming – it being his first visit home since winning this year’s Spanish Grand Prix – where Maldonado was set to complete a 12-lap demonstration run in front of over 20,000 local fans, as well as many senior government and military figures.
With senior Williams figures present – including Sir Frank Williams and major shareholder Toto Wolff – Maldonado found himself caught out by the bumpy surface on the Fuerte Tiunas military parade ground.
The accident saw him damage his Williams’ suspension on the roadside kerbing, which cut short his demonstration run.
Hopes of getting back out again after some quick repairs went south when a violent electrical storm hit the venue.