Alonso and Hamilton crash in Belgian GP start
SPA, Belgium - The Associated Press
Lotus driver Romain Grosjean of France, top center, crashes with Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso of Spain, obscured, during the first lap of the Belgium Formula One Grand Prix in Spa-Francorchamps circuit, Belgium, Sunday, Sept. 2, 2012. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)Formula One championship leader Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton both crashed out of the Belgian Grand Prix on Sunday after being involved in a spectacular pileup at the first corner that also took out two other drivers.
The incident was triggered when Lotus driver Romain Grosjean clipped Hamilton’s McLaren shortly after the start. That sent both cars spinning and led to Grosjean’s Lotus flying over Alonso’s Ferrari, which then took out Sergio Perez’s Sauber.
All four drivers walked away apparently unhurt, but a visibly frustrated Hamilton briefly confronted Grosjean after the incident and tapped his own helmet with his finger after getting out of his car.
Grosjean’s actions may be investigated by stewards as he took the dangerous option of changing direction moments after the race start as he went for a gap.
Alonso, who had picked up points in every race this season, was lucky to escape serious injury as Grosjean’s Lotus went over his car and narrowly missed the Spaniard’s head.
Pole sitter Jenson Button of McLaren was not affected by the crash and maintained his lead as the safety car went out onto the track and piles of smashed car parts were cleared from the track.
Alonso will retain the overall lead despite the crash.