Death of an F1 driver

On this day in F1 – 10th January 1971
Italian driver Ignazio Giunti died competing in the Buenos Aires 1000km race.

Unsighted by another car, Giunti’s Ferrari crashed into the back of the Matra of Jean-Piere Beltoise which the driver was trying push along the track to the pits – it was only later that year this was banned.

Giunti’s vehicle was thrown into the air, hitting the track 200 yards ahead and bursting into flames. Team-mate Arturo Merzario sprinted 500 yards from the pits and, just as he would do at the Nürburgring in 1976, pulled the driver from the blazing inferno.

However, Giunti was already dead although some claimed he died shortly after being dragged from his car. Remarkably, Beltoise escaped unharmed as the impact was on one side of his stricken vehicle while he was pushing at the other.

Credit: ESPN


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