The number 8 Toyota TS030 LMP1 being driven by Britain’s Anthony Davidson suffered a major a crash just before the five-hour mark of the 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race taking place this weekend.
As the video shows, the Toyota hybrid came into contact with a Ferrari 458 Italia competing in the GTE class and being driven by Piergiuseppe Perrazini at the time.
Davidson appears to have been attempting to pass Perazzini on the approach to Mulsanne Corner, before the crash ends up sending his Toyota through the air and eventually into a tire barrier.
The Ferrari then crashed just a few feet away, into the same barrier.
Doctors at the circuit have confirmed that Davidson is suffering from shock and fractures to some vertebrae, though he was walking and talking with no problems earlier. Perrazini was very lucky, managing to walk away from the crash with only a few bruises.
Sadly for Toyota, its return to Le Mans after more than a decade ended at just the 11th hour of the race.
An impressive start to the team’s first race saw the Toyota hybrids fighting at the front, reaching a pinnacle when Nicolas Lapierre, sharing the number 7 with Alex Wurz and Kazuki Nakajima, took the lead as the six-hour mark approached.
However, the team’s joy was ended only seconds later due to Davidson’s crash. A safety car period followed the crash and, when the green flags waved, Kazuki in the number 7 fought for the lead. Unfortunately, he was also unlucky and made contact with another car, causing a puncture and rear bodywork damage.
That began a challenging period for the team, with several problems losing the number 7 significant time in the pits as the crew worked hard to achieve the target of finishing the race.However, an engine failure after 10-and-a-half hours forced the difficult decision to retire the car and end Toyota’s Le Mans return prematurely.