APRIL 17, 2000
BRITISH AMERICAN RACING driver Ricardo Zonta was fortunate to escape unhurt from a huge testing accident at Silverstone last weekend when his BAR-Honda lost a wheel at high-speed just before Stowe Corner (where Michael Schumacher crashed last year). The car spun into the sandtrap where the suspension dug into the gravel and the car was launched into the air. Eyewitnesses say it clipped the top of the tire barrier and then cleared the eight foot high debris fencing before landing upside-down in a no-go area. Zonta, who was injured last year when his car suffered a suspension failure in Brazil, was not hurt, the only damage being a cut on his finger which he sustained while wriggling out from under the car. The team suspended all testing immediately as they were unable to pinpoint the cause of the suspension failure.
After the accident the track was closed for an hour while debris was cleared away and investigations begun. The FIA Safety Delegate Charlie Whiting was away in America but he and the FIA Safety Commission will study the accident and see if there is anything that can be done to improve safety in time for the British GP.