Create

F1 2018: Top 5 biggest crashes

There have been some shocking crashes in Formula 1 in the past year.
There have been some shocking crashes in Formula 1 in the past year.
George Howson

Nothing produces a spectacle in Formula 1 on the scale of a high-speed collision or a large pile-up.

The dangers of motorsport are well-known, but we're able to be thrilled at witnessing these incredible crashes without the fear that the driver(s) have been seriously hurt (for the most part).

The introduction of the Halo has been a very controversial one, to say the least, but it has increased safety and probably saved at least one life this year just gone. Whether with one driver or a good chunk of the grid involved in these wrecks they are awesome for their speed and scale, and the best part is that nobody was seriously injured.

In this article, we take a look at the biggest crashes of the season.


#5 Grosjean Spins in Spain

Grosjean would take himself and 2 others out at the start of the Spanish GP.
Grosjean would take himself and 2 others out at the start of the Spanish GP.

Romain Grosjean has successfully removed his "First Lap Nutcase" branding since his first season back in F1 in 2012 but didn't do much to help his reputation in Spain.

The Frenchman hadn't scored a single point in the opening four rounds thanks to both bad luck and bad driving so he was desperate to get on the board at the start of the European season. Grosjean qualified a solid P10, but still behind his teammate Kevin Magnussen for Sunday's race.

Romain made a decent start and was behind Magnussen going into Turn 3, but a twitch from the Dane send Grosjean into a spin going around the long right-hander. Grosjean - perhaps foolishly so - tried to rescue the spin but only succeeding in creating a smokescreen for the drivers behind.

Nico Hulkenberg ran into the right side of the Haas, as did Pierre Gasly. Lots of broken carbon fibre and a few loose wheels later and all three were out of the race before it had hardly begun.

#4 Raging Bulls in the Land of Fire

Verstappen and Ricciardo had a race-long battle in Baku
Verstappen and Ricciardo had a race-long battle in Baku

Rule number 1 of motorsport: Don't take your teammate out. Clearly, though, Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo didn't get that memo.

On Lap 40 of 51 of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, the Red Bulls were battling for fourth place. The pair had clashed and made contact with each other several times during the race but their luck ran out with just over 10 laps remaining.

Verstappen had jumped Ricciardo during the pit-stops thanks to an overcut, and the Aussie was doing everything he could to get back past.

Ricciardo was in the slipstream of Verstappen and moved to the outside to try and force an overtake. The Dutchman covered him off, to which the Honey Badger then instinctively moved to the inside, but nobody could react fast enough to prevent what happened next.

Mad Max cut Ricciardo off in the braking zone and the RBR cars collided, taking both out of the race as a result. This could've easily been a worse crash, as they were going down the longest full-throttle section of the current F1 calendar before making contact, but they thankfully stayed on the ground.

#3 Stroll & Hartley (Canada)

Brendon Hartley had a miserable 2018 and this incident didn't help his cause.
Brendon Hartley had a miserable 2018 and this incident didn't help his cause.

The fast and tight straights of Canada's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve usually produce high-speed crashes and we saw another in 2018.

Going into the second chicane on the first lap, Brendon Hartley was hanging around the outside of Lance Stroll in the hope of overtaking the home favourite, but this would go drastically wrong.

Stroll - perhaps from defending too vigorously - slipped mid-corner, forcing Hartley into a wedge too small to fit his Toro Rosso car and also the outer wall.

The Kiwi's left side was destroyed and his car rode up on Stroll's racer, sending them both into the crash barriers and out of the race. Who was at fault is difficult to say and the FIA understandably took this stance too, choosing to punish neither of the pair for the incident.

#2 Flying Swede in Italy

Ericsson was very lucky to escape this crash without injury.
Ericsson was very lucky to escape this crash without injury.

In terms of speed, this was without a doubt the biggest crash of the season.

The speed of Monza's long straights is mesmeric, they don't call it La Pista Magica "The Magic Track" for nothing. This speed, though, can be deadly and has claimed many lives over the years and without modern motorsport safety, it could've taken another in 2018.

At the beginning of Friday's second practice for the Italian Grand Prix, Marcus Ericsson took to the track for what he thought was going to be a routine 90-minute session, but he was sadly mistaken.

On the run down to the first chicane, Ericsson's DRS system failed to close (it should automatically close when the brakes are applied, regardless of the speed) and this took away too much of the rear downforce for him to maintain control of his Sauber.

The Swede lost the rear end, smashed into the trackside barriers before spinning 360 degrees and flipping over several times. His car was a wreck, but thankfully, Marcus was fine and competed in the race on Sunday.

#1 Spa Break Gone Wrong

It doesn't bare thinking about what could've happened without the Halo.
It doesn't
bare
thinking about what could've happened without the Halo.

The Halo was controversial, but after the 2018 Belgian Grand Prix, nobody can claim that it's not necessary.

The La Source hairpin has witnessed some huge wrecks over the years, 1998 and 2012 being the worst example, but the pile-up from last year's race is right up there. At the start, Lewis Hamilton held off Sebastian Vettel but the real action was occurring behind them, as Nico Hulkenberg locked-up and ran into the back of Fernando Alonso.

Alonso spun 90 degrees and smacked into the back of Charles Leclerc's Sauber. Alonso then flew up in the air and came back down just in front of the Monegasque driver. All three would immediately retire, while both Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo also retired through collision damage later.

Slow-motion replays showed a more gruesome detail, Alonso's car had ridden on the top of Leclerc's Halo during his time airborne. Had the Halo not been there, the Spaniard's McLaren would've likely scraped Leclerc's helmet, something that could've ended in tragedy.


What do you think was the biggest Formula 1 crash in 2018? Was it one of our five or another? Let us know in the comments below!

Edited by Debjyoti Samanta

Comments

Quick Links

More from Sportskeeda
Fetching more content...