Romain Grosjean: The miracle of the Bahrain GP in first person

The Frenchman told the French magazine Autohebdo everything that happened in that half minute that he was in the middle of the flames.

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Without a doubt, the French Romain Grosjean was the protagonist of a true miracle after surviving the tremendous accident in the Bahrain Grand Prix de F1. The team driver Haas got confused, embedded himself between the metal sheets of the guard-rail and he got out of his burning car on his own. Here is his story for the French magazine Autoweekly.

- “When the car stopped, I opened my eyes and unbuckled my seat belt immediately. What I did not remember the following days was what I did with the steering wheel because I do not remember removing the steering wheel and turning it off ”.

Romain groasjean- “The team said no, that the steering had gotten between my legs, my spine and everything broke and fell. I didn't have to bother with the steering wheel then, so I tried to jump. But I felt like something was touching my head, so I sat back in the car and my first thought was, I'm going to wait. I'm face down against the wall, so I'm going to wait for someone to come and help me ”.

- “I was not stressed and obviously did not know there was a fire. Then I look to the right and to the left and there I see the fire. So I say, okay, I don't have time to wait here. "

- “So the next thing is that I tried to go up a little more to the right, and I couldn't. I went back to the left, either. I sit back and then I thought about Niki Lauda, ​​her accident, and I thought it couldn't end like this. It couldn't be my last race. It couldn't be. So I tried again. And it was stuck. "

Romain Grosjean
Romain Grosjean was miraculously saved.

- “I go back down and then there is the least pleasant moment in which my body began to relax. I'm at peace with myself and I think I'm going to die. I asked myself the question: is my shoe going to burn, or my foot or my hand? Is it going to be painful? Where are you going to start?

- “It seems to me that it is two, three or four seconds. I guess it will be milliseconds. And then, I think about my children, and that they couldn't lose their father. So I don't know why I did it, but I decided to turn my helmet to the left and go up and then try to twist my shoulder. That worked".

- “But then I realized that my foot was stuck in the car. So I sat down again. I pulled as hard as I could on my left leg. The shoe stayed where my foot was, but the foot came off.

- “And then I do it again and then the shoulder went through the gap and, the moment the shoulder went through, I knew it was going to jump. But I had both hands on the fire at that instant… My gloves are normally red, and I see, especially the left one, changing color, starting to melt and turn completely black. I feel the pain that my hands are on fire, but I also feel the relief of being out of the car.

Romain Grosjean- “Then I jump, I go to the barrier and then I feel Ian (Roberts, F1 doctor) pulling my diver. So I know that I am no longer alone and that there is someone with me ”.

- “When I land and then they touch my back, I say to myself: 'Oh shit, I'm like a fireball that runs'. I had that image that we have seen in an FIA video when they did a test, they put someone on fire and he runs around just to show that the clothing holds. I imagine I have fire following me ”.

- “Then I shake my hands because they are very hot and they hurt. I took the gloves off immediately because I also imagine the skin is bubbling and melting, and it's going to stick to the gloves. So I immediately want to take off both gloves so that the skin doesn't stick together ”.

- “Then Ian comes to see me and talks to me and says 'Sit down!' and I said, 'talk to me normally, please'. I guess he understood that I was fine at the time, that it was normal. And then we sit down and we're too close to the fire and I hear the fire extinguisher guys saying 'the battery is on fire, bring another extinguisher, bring another extinguisher.

Romain Grosjean
The Haas broke in two.

- “Then we got into the medical car. I feel. They put a cold compress on my hand. I told them my hands are burned, my foot is broken. But then the pain begins to be very strong, especially in the left foot. The hands were fine at the time, the left foot starts to hurt a lot. "

- “Ian explains to me that the ambulance is coming and that they will come with the stretcher and that I will be fine. We continue talking at that time. And I say 'no, no, no, we are walking towards the ambulance'. They say, 'No, no, no, the stretcher is coming.' I say 'no, no, no', and I get out of the car and say let's walk. Then they say, 'Okay, let's help you.'

- “I suppose that in the medical aspect it was not the perfect decision but they understood that for me it was key that there were some images of me walking towards the ambulance, even though I had come out of the fire. He needed to send another strong message that he was okay and that he was going to walk to the ambulance. "

- “After that, every time I met someone, I would say 'two burned hands, one broken foot'. That's all I could say to everyone I came across. Obviously I was scared by my condition and I wanted everyone who came to treat me to know what the symptoms were. "

- “But that is the complete story of the 28 seconds. As you can imagine, it seemed longer than 28 seconds with all the thoughts I had, so it must have been milliseconds. "



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