Zhou Guanyu’s car flips over tire barrier in huge F1 crash

SILVERSTONE, England — The British Grand Prix was halted before the end of lap one after two serious collisions involving multiple drivers down the pit straight resulted in Zhou Guanyu’s Alfa Romeo landing on the wrong side of the tire barriers at Turn 1 .

Rescuers were on hand immediately, and Zhou and Williams driver Alex Albon were taken to the medical center. Both were cleared of serious injuries but Albon is taken to Coventry Hospital for precautionary checks while Zhou was discharged from the medical center during the race.

A replay showed Pierre Gasly being pinched between George Russell on one side and Zhou on the other, with the contact between Gasly and Russell throwing Russell’s Mercedes into Zhou’s Alfa Romeo.

The energy of the second impact rolled Zhou’s car, sending it headfirst through the run-off area before rolling over the barriers, only to be stopped at the safety fence in front of a grandstand.

Zhou later said Formula 1’s halo cockpit protection “saved my life”.

The halo was introduced in F1 ahead of the 2018 season but was controversial among many traditionalists as it represented such a big step away from the exposed look of cars.

The device likely saved Charles Leclerc from serious injury at this year’s Belgian Grand Prix and has been blamed for rescuing drivers in several other incidents, including Romain Grosjean’s fireball accident at the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix.

Just moments after Zhou’s crash, Albon was involved in another incident when he hit the brakes in the first crash and Sebastian Vettel pushed into the back of his Williams. The collision pinned Albon into the pit wall before bouncing back onto the track and colliding with Yuki Tsunoda and Esteban Ocon.

Tsunoda, Ocon and Gasly were able to return to the pits while Zhou, Albon and Russell were eliminated immediately.

Shortly after the collisions, the race was red flagged as the leaders headed for the Wellington Straight, disrupting the race.

Aside from the collisions, protesters also broke onto the track further around the lap.

The race restarted at 15:56 local time.

https://www.espn.com/f1/story/_/id/34188485/zhou-guanyu-car-flips-tire-barrier-huge-f1-crash Zhou Guanyu’s car flips over tire barrier in huge F1 crash

Emma Bowman

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