Former F1 driver Mark Webber suffers horror crash in Brazil but is in ‘satisfactory condition’
SAO PAULO // Veteran Australian motor racing driver Mark Webber was injured in a high-speed crash at the Six Hours of Sao Paulo event on Sunday as his maiden season in the FIA World Endurance Championship ended on a sour note.
Webber, racing for Porsche in the World Endurance Championship after quitting Formula One last season, was stretchered off the Interlagos circuit after his car collided with the Ferrari of Matteo Cressoni.
Footage showed both cars crashing into a concrete barrier at speeds estimated at around 300km/h with Webber’s vehicle catching fire before it came to a stop with the car wrecked.
The 38-year-old Australian, who is reportedly in a satisfactory condition following the accident, appeared to escape serious injury despite reportedly slamming into a wall following a collision with the Ferrari of Matteo Cressoni in the final hour of the race.
Any fears of either the Porsche driver or Cressoni being in serious condition were allayed by the FIA.
A statement on its official website said: “The race ended under the safety car after a serious accident between the #20 Porsche of Mark Webber and the #90 AF Corse Ferrari of Matteo Cressoni.
“Both drivers were taken to the circuit’s medical centre and, after initial examination, to the local Hospital Bandeirantes for further checks, their condition has been reported as satisfactory.”
Webber gave a thumbs-up to the crowd as he was taken to the medical centre although there was no immediate word of his condition.
Porsche team boss Fritz Enzinger later said Webber was recovering in a Sao Paulo hospital.
“Mark is OK, but he has had to go to hospital for further checks,” Enzinger said.
“We have spoken to him and said that people can go and see him, so Timo (Bernhard) and Brendon (Hartley, Webber’s team-mates) have gone to the hospital.”
The race, which ended behind the safety car, was won by the Porsche of Neel Jani.
Webber’s accident brought sympathy from former rivals.
“Glad to see @AussieGrit is ok after his shunt at Interlagos @FIAWEC, that was a big one matey,” tweeted 2009 Formula One world champion Jenson Button, using Webber’s Twitter address to contact the Australian.
Webber is now racing in sportscars with Porsche after retiring from F1 at the end of last season, ending his 12-year association with the sport.
He finishes his debut campaign in the World Endurance Championship in joint ninth place, over 100 points behind overall winner Anthony Davidson of Britain.
A statement on Webber’s website said he will stay overnight at the Sao Paulo hospital for precautionary checks.
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Published: December 1, 2014 04:00 AM