How F1’s safety advances saved Grosjean

Romain Grosjean credited the halo for saving him after his horror Bahrain Grand Prix crash. But, while F1’s newest safety feature deserved a show of gratitude, it was a whole range of procedures and devices in place (plus a slice of luck) that proved vital

Romain Grosjean’s escape from the burning wreckage of his Haas VF-20 is nothing short of miraculous. That he was able to extricate himself, leap out of the barrier-entangled safety cell and into the arms of Alan van der Merwe and Dr Ian Roberts was a remarkable piece of luck that left all to breathe a sigh of relief.

When he drifted to the right on the exit of Turn 3, seemingly to avoid debris produced by Lando Norris’ McLaren after he was sandwiched between Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly, Grosjean pulled across the path of Daniil Kvyat and was turned directly into the face of the barrier. He hit the barrier with such force – recorded with a peak impact at 50g hitting the barrier at 137mph – that his car powered through it like a ballistic missile, tearing the Armco asunder.

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