Motorsport ace walks away unscathed after horrendous crash overtaking Porsche in ‘Batmobile’ race car

October 18, 2012 | by | 0 Comments

A motorsport ace had a miraculous escape after this horrific collision in his ‘Batmobile’ race car.

Gunnar Jeannette was testing the Nissan DeltaWing when he went to overtake a driver in his Porsche race car.

But the other racer clipped the Nissan, triggering a high-speed crash.

Gunnar Jeannette throws up his hands after losing control of the 'Batmobile'

Gunnar Jeannette throws up his hands after losing control of the ‘Batmobile’

The open-top racer was tipped onto its side and then smashed into the tyre wall before landing on its wheels during the the practice session of the 15th annual Petit Le Mans in Road Atlanta, USA.

Terrifying on-board footage from Nissan appears to show Jeannette’s helmet being dragged across tarmac and grass following the collision.

However, he is being protected by the car’s roll hoops which held firm – preventing a near-certain catastrophe.

Jeannette, 30, emerged from the wreck unscathed and, after a short trip to the hospital, was released having suffered no injuries.

The impact generated a staggering 7Gs according to the team’s telemetry system.

Jeannette  later described the incident as “not the best of practice sessions”, after being sent “for a bit of a ride”.

He added: “Luckily, the guys built a very strong car. While the damage looks to be bad in photographs, the car took the impact quite well.

An onboard camera captures the dust and debris from the smash

An onboard camera captures the dust and debris from the smash

The Nissan DeltaWing flips over after the other racer clipped the vehicle which triggered a high-speed crash

The Nissan DeltaWing flips over after the other racer clipped the vehicle which triggered a high-speed crash

“We have all the spare parts to fix it and we have an excellent crew that got to work straight away and had the car stripped down remarkably quickly.”

The Nissan DeltaWing has been dubbed the Batmobile because of its unconventional design looks and stealthy paintjob.

It is fitted with a tiny 1.6-litre turbocharged engine which develops 300bhp – giving the lightweight vehicle blistering performance.

Before the crash, the DeltaWing was 4/10ths of a second slower than the fastest P2 car in sixth place on the timesheet for the afternoon session.

It had set a fastest time of 1 minute, 13.686 seconds for the 2.54-mile Road Atlanta circuit.

Darren Cox, Nissan DeltaWing director, said: “The most important thing is that Gunnar is OK after a very nasty accident.

“The guys are working very hard and will do everything they can to get back on track tomorrow.

“What I am most pleased about is that while the car obviously passed all the virtual and actual FIA crash tests prior to running at Le Mans, we’ve unfortunately tested the car in real world incidents twice now and in both cases the car has done its job in protecting the driver.

“We’d rather not do it again but we’ve certainly shown the concept works and it is very safe.”

The Petit Le Mans, which takes place betwen October 17 -20, is a 1,000km endurance race with 42 entries taking part.

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