Sharing a smiling photo, Zhou offered his own update on Twitter. “I’m fine, everything is clear. [The car’s roll bar] halo saved me today. Thank you all for your kind messages!”
Zhou’s car skidded on the gravel and flipped over the catch fence, ending up upside down after a collision involving, among others, George Russell of Mercedes, who immediately left his car and sprinted towards the Zhou’s car. Zhou, with the car’s protective halo doing its thing, was eventually extracted and taken from the course on a stretcher into an ambulance.
Russell, who received mechanical assistance after the accident, was also out of the race.
“First of all, the most important thing is that Zhou is fine,” Russell tweeted. “It was a scary incident and all credit goes to the marshals and the medical team for their quick response. Obviously gutted to end the race this way and I’m sorry for the team and the fans. Applause [teammate Lewis Hamilton] from the garage.
George Russell and Zhou Guanyu were involved in a big crash!
Russell is fine and got out of the car…even though Zhou’s car flipped over. Let’s hope he’s unharmed. pic.twitter.com/TPcGbGk6cT
— Sky Sports F1 (@SkySportsF1) July 3, 2022
Alex Albon of Williams and Pierre Gasly of Alpha Tauri were also involved in the accident. Both drivers sought treatment at the medical center and Albon, whose car hit the wall, was taken to hospital for further evaluation. Zhou and Russell left the race. Esteban Ocon and Yuki Tsunoda, also involved in the affair, were repaired and returned to the grid.
Onboard video showed Gasly trying to move into a space between Zhou and Russell, who moved to the left. Gasly’s right forward touched Russell’s left-back, sending the latter’s Mercedes into Zhou’s car.
Zhou is the first Chinese driver to compete in Formula 1.
Formula 1 officials also said several fans tried to invade the track after the crash. “We can confirm that after the red flag several people attempted to enter the track,” the organization told the BBC. “These people were immediately evicted and the matter is now being handled by the local authorities.”