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GBR | Jul 3, 2022

Zhou conscious after crash halts British Grand Prix

/ Our Today

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Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu Zhou crashes out at the start of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone, Britain today (July 3). (Photo: REUTERS/Molly Darlington)

SILVERSTONE, England (Reuters)

The British Formula One Grand Prix was halted and re-started today (July 3) after a multi-car opening-lap collision left Chinese driver Guanyu Zhou’s Alfa Romeo wedged on its side between the tyre barrier and catch fence.

The governing FIA said emergency crews were quickly on the scene to extract Zhou, whose car skidded upside down along the track at speed before bouncing across gravel and flipping over the impact-absorbing tyre wall.

Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu Zhou crashes out at the start of the race. (Photo: REUTERS/Molly Darlington)

The rookie remained conscious and was taken to the medical centre for further evaluation along with Williams’s Alexander Albon, who was later transferred to hospital in Coventry by helicopter for precautionary checks.

“He’s conscious, talking and no fractures. Considering the circumstances, he is pretty good,” said an FIA spokesman of Zhou.

Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu Zhou crashes out at the start of the race. (Photo: REUTERS/Andrew Boyers)

The race was later re-started.

Mercedes’s George Russell was also involved in the incident and retired, the crash at Abbey ending the Briton’s run as the sole driver to have finished every race in the top five places this season.

Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu Zhou is taken away in an ambulance after he crashes out at the start of the race. (Photo: REUTERS/Andrew Boyers)

Russell, who got out and ran across to check on Zhou, appeared to have been clipped from behind, with his tyre then making contact with the Alfa.

“I got swamped by other cars and next thing I know I got touched, I was in the side of Zhou and that was it,” said Russell.

Television replays of the crash were not broadcast until it was clear Zhou had been removed safely and was conscious.

Staff clear debris after Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu Zhou crashes out at the start of the race. (Photo: Pool via REUTERS/Matt Dunham)

Alpine’s Esteban Ocon limped back to the pits on three-and-a-half tyres, with the half flailing on a rim.

Red Bull’s championship leader Max Verstappen had seized the lead at the start from Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz while Mercedes’s seven-times world champion Lewis Hamilton was in third place after a storming start from fifth.

The race re-started according to original grid places, however.

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