5 Worst F1 crashes in the hybrid era
#1 Jules Bianchi, Japan 2014
Unfortunately, this had to be number 1.
The reason why the Halo was introduced into F1 is largely down to this tragic crash. The attention was largely at the front of the race, as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg continued their season-long battle for the driver's title in Japan. The race was plagued by heavy rain thanks to a Typhoon throughout, so much so that the initial start had to be abandoned after a few reconnaissance laps before the Safety Car. The eventually got underway about half an hour later, and aside from Fernando Alonso's Ferrari cutting out behind the SC, the entire field was still circulating.
That remained the case until Lap 42 of 53, when Adrian Sutil ran wide and off the track at the Dunlop corner, just after the famous "S" curves. The rain had eased somewhat during the race, allowing drivers to switch from extreme wets to intermediate tyres, but it had once again picked up by the time of this incident.
Sutil was unharmed, and his Sauber was being routinely extracted by a tractor crane in order to clear any hazards. However, it wasn't done so quickly enough to avoid Jules Bianchi, who aquaplaned on the same tarmac as Sutil and flew off the road. Bianchi's car collided with the rear of the tractor crane, and slid underneath it, destroying most of his Marussia in the process. The impact was so severe, that Bianchi was thrown into an unconscious state before being transported to the nearest hospital. Jules remained in this condition for nine months, before passing away in July 2015. He was only 25 years old, and is one of Grand Prix racing's great lost talents.
Jules Bianchi remains Formula 1's most recent - and hopefully last - fatality during a Grand Prix.
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