Anthoine Hubert, Arden, Spa, 2019

“One victim is too much”: Todt vows to continue safety push after Hubert crash

2019 Italian Grand Prix

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FIA president Jean Todt has vowed to continue improving safety standards in motorsport in the wake of Anthoine Hubert’s fatal crash at Spa last week.

“We have witnessed what has happened one week ago in Spa where Hubert lost his life,” said Todt. “Now we have Juan Manuel Correa who is fighting for his life.

“But that’s the way it is: We need to learn out of that and make sure that one time, one life lost, will help [us] to understand better.”

Todt said the tragedy shows that despite recent advances in driver safety, motorsport cannot be made completely safe. “It will never be bulletproof, unfortunately.”

Speaking at Monza today, before Alex Peroni’s shocking crash in an F3 race from which the driver emerged unscathed, Todt pointed out that fatal motorsport crashes have become rare.

“If you take motor racing it kills less people than professional cycling. But saying that we cannot be happy because it just is less. One victim is too much.

“So we want to fight but unfortunately motor sport is dangerous. Less than it was, but it’s still dangerous. And sometimes there is a kind of wake-up call.”

Todt pointed out there had been resistance the last major safety innovation made in the sport, the Halo, which he pushed to introduce.

Jean Todt, Hockenheimring, 2019
Todt: ‘People said we didn’t need Halo’
“Sometimes people have a short memory,” he said. “If you think about a few months ago when we introduced Halo, people were saying ‘we don’t need that’. And now if we will speak about that they say ‘we want more than the Halo’. So it’s very emotional.

“Of course when you have a responsibility to decide you must decide, just thinking what it could prevent. But we know that unfortunately it cannot prevent everything.”

He said the FIA is monitoring crashes across all motorsport disciplines to see what it can learn.

“I think this year we are at about 21 fatalities in motor sport, all categories together across the world. But it does include spectators, it does include marshals.

“Clearly we are monitoring every day the situation. We speak a lot about single-seater racing, about Formula 1, Formula 2, Formula 3 but we have to be very conscious about what is happening in karting because you have thousands of competitors and we want nobody injured. That’s the aim.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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4 comments on ““One victim is too much”: Todt vows to continue safety push after Hubert crash”

  1. 21 this year?
    Makes you wonder what incidents are not being reported. If I had to guess, I would assume most are national rallies, but I’d rather not make an assumption.

    1. @eurobrun – yeah, rallies would also explain the spectator fatalities, as that seems highly unlikely on closed circuits.

  2. Short memory and no tolerance for bs is not the same thing. I remember very well the debacle of the Halo and i remember even better Bianchi who died for nothing.

  3. I looked at Motorsport Memorial which lists 12 deaths in cars, 14 in bikes and 1 in boats this year. No marshals or spectators listed there, two rally crashes where both driver and co-driver were killed.

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