Zhou Guanyu said Formula 1’s Halo saved him from injury in his enormous crash at the start of the British Grand Prix.
The Alfa Romeo driver flipped upside down at the start of the race following contact with George Russell. The car skidded towards a barrier resting on the Halo, a structure which was added to cars four years ago to improve safety.
Zhou’s car then hit a tyre barrier, rolled over the top of it and struck a debris fence. It fell down between the two where it came to a rest, upside down.
“It was a big crash and I’m glad I’m okay,” said Zhou in a statement released by his team. “The marshals and the medical team at the track were fantastic with their quick response.
“I also owe my thanks to the FIA and Formula 1 for all the work they have done, and they keep doing, to improve the safety of our cars,” he said. “The Halo saved me today and it goes to show that every step we take in improving our cars has real, valuable results.”
He said he is looking forward to returning to action in practice at the Red Bull Ring on Friday. “I’m keener than ever to get back on track and do what I love: I’m fit and I’m looking forward to Austria next week.”
Alfa Romeo team principal Frederic Vasseur also praised the FIA’s safety standards. “I think we can all agree that the most important thing today is seeing Zhou come out of such a huge crash without any injury,” he said.
“What we witnessed were dramatic scenes and once again we have to thank the great improvements in safety spearheaded by the FIA and Formula 1 for a positive outcome. The work to improve safety in our sport is never done and today reminds us of just how important this is: Zhou is okay and fit to race in Austria next week, and this is the big victory of the day.”
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