Jun.11 (GMM) Michael Schumacher's run of terrible luck is raising questions about equality within the Mercedes team.
His 2012 title hopes already effectively over due to a spate of incidents and technical problems, the seven time world champion once again failed to finish on Sunday when his DRS rear wing stuck open in Canada.
"It's hard to understand why the problems affect only one driver," former Force India racer Adrian Sutil said on German television Sky.
I can only apologise to Michael for a further technical failure.
"If you compare his points with Nico (Rosberg)'s, the difference is significant," he added.
Team boss Ross Brawn said: "I can only apologise to Michael for a further technical failure."
Schumacher, however, denied any suggestion he is being given inferior equipment, mechanics, or attention to detail.
"I am one hundred per cent convinced of that," he is quoted by Bild newspaper.
"In my time at Ferrari is the was the reverse: it was said we favoured Michael and gave his teammates something less," he is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport.
"Of course it's nonsense. A team always tries to give both the drivers exactly the same. If there is a one-sided series of defects, then that is down to fate alone," Brawn argued.
It is bad timing, however, that Schumacher's string of problems coincides with his expiring Mercedes contract, and the talks and decisions that must precede a new one.
"Obviously it's not a help," said Sutil. "At some point it can affect your motivation, as it happens no matter what you do or how strong you are.
"But there are still races to go and it can turn around," he insisted.