Romain Grosjean leaps away from inferno as car sliced in half in first lap crash in Bahrain Grand Prix
Romain Grosjean miraculously survived a huge crash on the opening lap of the Bahrain Grand Prix when his car hit the wall and burst into flames.
Frenchman Grosjean, 34, veered off the track after just three corners, hitting the barriers with an impact registering at 53G.
The sport held its breath as the TV cameras cut away from the flashpoint and the race was immediately stopped.
But Grosjean’s Haas team reported that the driver was out of the cockpit.
He was then pictured sitting in the medical car before gingerly heading towards a stretcher.
A replay then showed Grosjean frantically leaping out of his fireball inferno with the aid of a medical doctor.
It emerged that his car sliced in half on impact, with one part of the car going through the other side of the barrier.
A Haas spokesperson said: “Romain has minor burns on his hands and ankles but otherwise he is OK. He is with the doctors now.
“As a precaution and for further medical evaluation Romain will be transported to hospital.”
Lewis Hamilton, who maintained his lead at the front of the grid, tweeted while the race was suspended and took the crash as a reminder of the dangers of the sport.
“I’m so grateful Romain is safe. Wow… the risk we take is no joke, for those of you out there that forget that we put our life on the line for this sport and for what we love to do,” he wrote.
“Thankful to the FIA for the massive strides we’ve taken for Romain to walk away from that safely.”
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