George Russell said Romain Grosjean’s horrifying crash in the Bahrain Grand Prix was like “something from a movie”.
Russell made a poor start at the Bahrain Grand Prix, meaning he fell backwards from his P14 starting spot, putting him behind Grosjean at the point of the incident.
Grosjean would move across the track and collide with the AlphaTauri on Daniil Kvyat, sending him into the barriers coming out of Turn 3, at which point Grosjean’s Haas was ripped in two with the cockpit, containing Grosjean, becoming engulfed in flames.
Miraculously Grosjean was able to unstrap himself before the brave medical personnel pulled him to safety, and Russell described what he saw as being like “something from a movie”.
“I saw as he speared off into the barrier and naturally looked into my mirror and saw a ball of flames,” said Russell, as quoted by Motorsportweek.com.
“It felt like something from a movie almost, absolutely horrific, and a reminder to all of us, and everyone, motorsport is dangerous.
“We go out there, in a race car, putting their lives on the line, and it was absolutely horrific. It says a lot how the safety is progressing. It will never be perfectly safe but to see him walk away, albeit pretty burnt, was incredible.”
This is unreal. Despite hitting the barrier head-on, his car being torn in half, and his half of the car bursting into flames, Romain Grosjean walked away from this massive crash. Respect to the marshals and medics on the scene. pic.twitter.com/mGSI2fP5qk
— Simon Head (@simonhead) November 29, 2020
Russell’s team-mate Nicholas Latifi said in other circumstances an incident like that could have had a far different outcome, but felt the fact it didn’t was testament to the way safety has continuously been pushed and improved in Formula 1.
“It shows motorsport is dangerous, the risks are there, sometimes people at home forget that,” he said.
“When you see exciting races, cars crashing with each other, it makes for a good show but it doesn’t come without potential risks and consequences.
“It shows the strides the FIA has continued to make with safety. There’s a lot of things that could have gone a lot worse in different circumstances.
“The halo again showed itself to be a very critical addition to the car, and the safety which is amazing, all the fireproof clothing that we wear, and I’m sure this accident will prove another catalyst to push to even more safety on all fronts.”
Grosjean suffered only burns to his hands and is expected to be released from hospital on Tuesday, though Haas reserve driver Pietro Fittipaldi will race in his place at the upcoming Sakhir Grand Prix.