MANAMA: Romain Grosjean escaped from a horrific first-lap crash at the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday when his car split in two and burst into flames.
The French driver’s Haas collided with Daniil Kyvat’s Alpha Tauri on turn three, skewing into a barrier.
Grosjean, 34, was lodged in the front half of his monocoque as it appeared to fly under the barrier, leaving the rear half behind on the edge of the circuit after spinning on impact.
His car’s fuel tank was clearly ruptured in the accident, releasing the fuel that ignited in a huge blaze.
The crash came at a service road access point where the driver and medical crew from the circuit Safety Car were on the scene immediately.
They helped Grosjean from his car as he leapt over the barrier.
A medical official used a fire extinguisher on his race suit as they tackled the blaze and quickly put it out.
A clearly shaken Grosjean was taken back to the pits by the medical car at the Sakhir Circuit suffering from minor burns.
Hass team boss Gunther Steiner told Sky TV: “He’s doing OK. He has light burns on hands and ankles. Obviously he is shaking and going through all the checks but he’s fine.
“He seems to be OK and the rescue was very quick. The marshals and FIA did a great job. It was very scary.
“It looked like he went across the track with the front wheel and went full speed in the barrier.”
The race was immediately red-flagged and the rest of the cars filed back to the pit lane.