The Italian Junkyard

Thoughts, ideas, criticism about cars. Interesting news and facts from the world of the automobile. Events in Italy and Modena. What you can find elsewhere, filtered through the eyes of a discerning enthusiast. Design, style, everything on the chopping block. Nobody is safe anymore.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

2010 FIA GT World Championship round 1 from Abu Dhabi, Natacha Gachnang's accident

Due to a bit of confusion about the time schedule, I completely missed the first "qualifying race", only to discover it was stopped due to a massive accident involving one of the Matech Ford GT, precisely the one driven by the only female couple. At the moment of the accident Natacha Gachnang was driving.

A leak in the rear braking circuit was apparently the reason for a lack of braking power, so when she was approaching Turn 8 from a top speed of 260 km/h she had to apply more and more pressure on the brake pedal. It appears that doing so not only the braking power at the rear was reduced by the leak, but probably she also pressed in some way the accelerator pedal. At that point, with the front tires completely blocked (as the front circuit was apparently fine) and the rear tires still turning she had no control of the car which smashed against the ARMCO barriers at the end of the straight.

The cameraman who was positioned in that area was hit by his own camera, resulting in a suspected broken nose. On the other hand he was definitely luckier than Natacha Gachnang who has already been operated because of a double compound fracture at her right leg.

It is very unfortunate to start this important season this way, but once again we know we can rely on safe cars and circuits.

You can watch the video of the accident, waiting for the championship race to start in a few hours.


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