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New photos and information from the Sainz accident: Loss of control at 309.4 km / h

Wilhelm
New photos and information from the Sainz accident
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M an should not be superstitious in racing. The accident happened in turn 13. Carlos Sainz flew through the measuring point at the end of the back straight at 309.4 km /h. The route makes a long curve to the left. Curve 13 is braked exactly there. At that moment it happened. The ToroRosso turned sideways, first hit the wall with the left front wheel, then with the left rear wheel.

The first impact knocked off the front wheel. It landed on the chassis exactly in front of the cockpit. Then the rear wheel buckled. This not only deprived the ToroRosso of its front brakes. The FIA ​​accident experts reported that the car slid on the floor slab towards the barriers. Braking effect is zero. The run-off zone there is relatively short given the high speed. The available terrain did not allow any more. There are three layers of Tecpro in front of the wall.

Toro Rosso nose got caught in Tecpro Barrier

The plastic building blocks cushioned the car optimally. The impact energy is said to have been lower than in the accident of team mate Max Verstappen at this year's Monaco GP. The ToroRosso's nose folded as intended, so that maximal energy was dissipated. The carbon fuselage was so firmly caught in the last Tecpro barrier that it took an hour to recover the car. The driver was always conscious during the accident. He even took off the helmet himself.

Criticism of the recovery was rejected by the race management. It only took a little longer because the vehicle was completely buried under the Tecpro components (see photos) and the doctors first have to find a way to recover Sainz from above. 'And that was absolutely professional', confirmed FIA race director Charlie Whiting.

Criticism of the nose that was too deep rejected

Some teams criticized that the ToroRosso could even dive under the high-speed barriers. The same thing was seen in the Verstappen accident in Monte Carlo. One reason for this is the lowered noses. 'We were the first team to warn against it,' said Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko. However, this cannot be an argument. A Formula 1 nose is still higher than the front section of other racing cars. WEC for example or IndyCar.

The height of the nose was chosen so that it would be in a T-bone accidentCar against car to cause as little damage as possible. In the event of a frontal impact, the barriers must do the job. The Sainz accident showed that the Tecpro system works, even if the car digs into the plastic blocks. 'That was the worst-case scenario, and the pilot was unharmed. It couldn't be more,' commented race track architect Hermann Tilke.

Did the DRS close too late?

The question of why Sainz lost control could not yet be clarified because the car was returned to the pits so late. Marko suspected from the fact that first the left front wheel blocked and then both rear wheels that the rear wing might close a bit too late. In addition, because of the high fuel consumption, ToroRosso trims its cars to less downforce than is actually necessary.

Lotus operations manager Alan Permane confirmed how close the transition is between deactivating the DRS and braking maneuvers. 'This number is too tricky for us. If the DRS is automatically coupled to the brake and closes only five meters too early, the driver has a problem. That is why we have installed a manual transmission for Sochi. Our drivers deactivate the DRS manually.' p>

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