Sir Frank Williams’ famous Formula 1 teams has taken its first victory since 2004, with Venezuelan driver Pastor Maldonado fending off Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso. But just 90 minutes later the team’s pit garage was completely alight.
The drama unfolded after the race when it was thought that fuel tanks were being loaded back into the trucks ready to be transported away from the track. An explosion occurred with thick smoke that quickly engulfed the Williams F1 garage and most of the pit lane. Numerous teams responded to the drama, battling to put out the fire.
Autosport is reporting that 31 people have been treated for injuries while seven of those were serious enough to be transported to hospital. Both the FIA (Formula 1’s governing body) plus the Williams F1 team have made statements.
“The FIA is collaborating closely with the Spanish authorities investigating this incident and will be providing a further update as soon as more information becomes available,” said the FIA. While Williams F1 stated, “The Williams F1 Team would like to thank all of the teams and the FIA for their support in today’s incident.”
Hero of the day has to go to Pastor Maldonado. Not only did he score his first ever victory and 25 points for a team that only scored five points in the entire season last year, but he then ran into the burning garage to pick up his cousin with a leg brace and piggy back him out of danger. Not an easy feat after you’ve driven 307km in a Formula 1 car with a double world champion hunting you down.
Nice one Pastor.
Damian Francis has previously edited Australian T3 and F1 Racing magazine and wrote for GQ Australia and Men’s Health. Unlike Nick and Trev, he has no kids, no mortgage and no wife, but lives happily on Sydney’s North Shore with his girlfriend.