French driver Anthoine Hubert killed in Formula Two crash

The 22-year-old was one of several drivers involved in an incident on the second lap at Spa-Francorchamps.

By Press Association Published: 31 August 2019 - 5.31pm

UK

World

French driver Anthoine Hubert has been killed in a Formula Two accident at the Belgian Grand Prix.

The 22-year-old died following a 160mph collision at the high-speed Spa-Francorchamps track.

Hubert raced for the British-owned Arden team, founded and run by Garry Horner, the father of Red Bull team boss Christian Horner.

A statement released by the sport’s governing body, the FIA, read: “The Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) regrets to advise that a serious incident involving cars #12, #19 and #20 occurred at 17:07 on 31/08/19 as a part of the FIA Formula 2 Sprint Race at Spa-Francorchamps, round 17 of the season.

“The scene was immediately attended by emergency and medical crews, and all drivers were taken to the medical centre.

“As a result of the incident, the FIA regrets to inform that the driver of car #19, Antoine Hubert (FRA), succumbed to his injuries, and passed away at 18:35.

“The driver of car #12, Juan-Manuel Correa (USA), is in a stable condition and is being treated at the CHU Liège hospital. More information on his condition will be provided when it becomes available.

“The driver of car #20 Giuliano Alesi (FRA) was checked and declared fit at the medical centre.

“The FIA is providing support to the event organisers and the relevant authorities, and has commenced an investigation into the incident.”

A number of drivers were involved in the second-lap accident on the exit of the fearsome Eau Rouge corner.

The official TV feed swiftly cut away from the scene and there were no replays of the accident.

But footage of the incident which later emerged on social media appeared to show Hubert slamming into the barriers on the far side of the circuit before sliding across the track.

Ecuadorian-American Juan Manuel Correa then crashed head on into Hubert, whose car appeared to break in two.

Correa was taken to Liege Hospital and is reported to be in a stable condition.

The Formula Two race, which acts as the feeder championship to Formula One, followed the conclusion of qualifying for the F1 grand prix which saw Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc secure pole position ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton.

Hubert was the reigning GP3 champion, had secured two victories this season and was lying eighth in the championship. He was also a member of the Renault Formula One driver academy.

Hamilton’s Mercedes team, which cancelled their media commitments on Saturday night, said: “The entire Mercedes family sends its deepest condolences to the family and friends of Anthoine Hubert, and his Arden and Renault teams on this tragic day.”

McLaren’s British teenager Lando Norris, who graduated from F2 last year, wrote on Twitter, “Rest in peace Anthoine.”

Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix is set to go ahead as scheduled.