Hamilton, Vettel & Ricciardo Test Special Gloves After Grosjean’s Fiery Bahrain F1 Crash

Published 10/08/2021, 7:40 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Sakhir Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – December 3, 2020 Haas’ Romain Grosjean arrives to thank marshals ahead of the Sakhir Grand Prix REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed


Following Romain Grosjean’s horrific crash in Bahrain last year, the FIA’s safety measures were praised. Despite having walked out of a fireball, Grosjean was relatively unscathed except for the burns on his arms. The FIA, having noticed a precaution they missed out on, has looked for ways to improve F1 drivers’ gloves.

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In a recent report, the FIA has disclosed their ongoing research project surrounding the safety of the driver’s hands. The disclosure reads: “The specific changes in glove specification required to achieve this increased protection must be balanced with the levels of comfort and dexterity required to operate a car safely for extended periods.”

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Having developed a prototype, the FIA needs to test them out. Therefore, they picked five drivers, and they will have to use the safety equipment in any free practice during the weekend. The drivers chosen are Lewis Hamilton, Daniel Ricciardo, Sebastian Vettel, Carlos Sainz, and George Russell.

Although the gloves haven’t been incorporated into the regulations yet, the trial is an important step in that direction. The burns that Romain Grosjean incurred were very serious; the FIA looks to wholly avoid such situations in the future.

The crash that stunned F1

The Haas driver was in flames for 28 seconds before he walked out of the flames. Now the Phoenix of F1, Romain Grosjean’s once burnt hand now holds the wheel in IndyCar. However, it was a long journey of healing for the driver.

In a true reflection of the advancements of the sport’s safety, Grosjean remembered Niki Lauda when he was in the burning car. “I try to go up a bit more on the right, it doesn’t work, go on the left, doesn’t work so I sit back down and thought about Niki Lauda, his accident, thought it couldn’t end like this, it couldn’t be my last race, it couldn’t finish like this, no way, so I try again.”

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Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Haas’ Romain Grosjean walks away from the crash scene with the help of medical officers after crashing out of the race Pool via REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

While Niki Lauda saw severe burn marks on his face, the helmets today prevented a similar occurrence for Grosjean.

In painting a harrowing picture of his escape, Grosjean revealed he ended up putting his hands in the fire, in an attempt to get the rest of his body out of the monocoque. As his hands stayed in the inferno, he noticed his gloves melting. “I feel the pain, my hands are in the fire but also I feel the relief that I am out of the car, and then I jump out, go on the barrier.”

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On the off-chance that a driver has to undergo such a disturbing event in the future, the FIA’s research is extremely necessary. Hoping that the trials are successful, the gloves will soon be available for the drivers next season.

Watch this story: Ferrari Strategy Fails We Will Never Forget

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Shreya Sanjeev

447 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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