Formula 1 is returning to Spa for the Belgium GP. This is the return to the track that claimed the life of an aspiring F1 driver, Anthoine Hubert was killed in a horrific accident while driving in F2.
For most of us that are connected to Motorsport, as a spectator/fan or employee, we understand the risks associated with the sport that we love. Accidents, bumping wheels are all part of the spectical, we all expect the driver to get out of the car.
In 2019 this didn’t happen, the risks of our beloved sport became all to real in an instant.
On the 2nd lap of an F2 race, Giuliano Alesi lost control of his car on the exit of turn 3 (Eau Rouge) spinning and hitting the left hand barrier and returning to the track at turn 4 (Raidillon). It was found that Alesi had lost pressure to the right rear tyre contributing to the loss of control.
Hubert and Boschung attempted to avoid the debris and Alesi by moving to the right of the track, they entered the run off area of turn 4, at this point Boschung slowed more abruptly than Hubert, this caused him to hit the rear of the car and losing his front wing. Hubert hit the barrier at 216km/h with a peak G force of 33.7g.
The force of the impact caused Hubert’s car towards the track, while this was happening, Juan Manuel Correa hit debris causing front right suspension damage, unfortunately this caused his car to head directly to the now stationary car of Anthoine Hubert. Correa hit Hubert in a “T-Bone” fashion at a speed of 218km/h with forces of 65.1g and 81.8g.
In the FIA report the accident lasted 14.6 seconds. With emergency response to Anthoine Hubert to be 54 seconds after the deployment of the Red Flag.
The FIA concluded that the accident was part of a complex chain of events.
When it was announced that Anthoine Hubert had died of injuries sustained in the accident, the Motorsport community far and wide reacted with universal sorrow. Condolences flooded in on social media from every part of the world and from the sporting world.
I have no words to describe today’s feelings. Anthoine it’s been a privilege to have you as a teammate and to share the track with you the last couple of years. A true champion, an ever greater person, you will always be in our hearts. RIP Anthoine. Thoughts and prays with his family.Tatiana Calderon posts a fitting tribute to Anthoine
Anthoine Hubert was 22 years old, from Lyon France. He started his open wheel racing in 2013 moving from karting to the French F4 Championship, winning the title in his first attempt. 2014 saw Anthoine head to the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0, he finished in 15th with 6 point scoring finishes, during this year he also competed in the Formula Renault Alps as a guest driver.
Hubert remained in the Formula Renault 2.0 series with Tech 1, finishing in an impressive 5th.
Anthoine’s career was beginning to take off, he headed over to the European F3 Championship winning his first race at the Norisring.
After a successful campaign in F3, he headed to the GP3 series winning it in 2018, alerting Formula 1 teams to his talents in the process.
Formula 2 racing was confirmed for the talented French driver in January of 2019 racing full time with BWT Arden.
In May 2018 Anthoine Hubert became affiliated to the Renault Sport Academy, gaining full backing in 2019.
Anthoine won 2 races in the 2019 F2 season at Monaco and France. His name was beginning to be mentioned with a seat in F1 in the not to distant future. It was pretty clear to the F2 paddock and beyond that he was destined for a bright future.
Motorsport has always been a sport with risk, however we cannot accept any loss no matter how infrequent it may be.
Life moves on, motorsport is no different, but one thing is for sure we will never forget the events of that day. We will never forget you Anthoine.
AH19 Tu nous manques