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Van der Drift: ‘Brands crash a racing incident’
After launching over another car, Van der Drift's car hit a bridge over Brands Hatch
Chris van der Drift reckons the 150mph crash at Brands Hatch last Sunday that left him with multiple broken bones was nothing more than a racing incident.
The New Zealander suffered two broken ribs, a broken right ankle and right little finger, fractured shoulder blade and severely damaged left index finger after launching over Julien Jousse’s left rear-wheel and into the parapet of a bridge during the weekend’s second Superleague Formula race.

Onboard replays from van der Drift’s car have proven inconclusive as to the events that contributed to the crash. But although the Olympiacos driver does believe Jousse altered his track position twice, he also made clear that the resulting accident was just an unfortunate reality of racing.

“I remember using my push-to-pass, went to overtake on the right hand side and (Jousse) moved once, but I kept my foot hard in it and then he moved again, I went on the grass and we touched,” he said. “I was committed to it as you need to keep the momentum up to get past. The first time he moved was close but the second one left me no room and I was already going for it. It was a racing incident, just one of those things really. I’m still alive, so that’s good.

“I remember when I started to fly, that was all, and then waking up again when I was stuck (in the car). I woke up, saw my hand and then knew my ankle was busted and in another direction. It was in serious pain so I undid the buckles and got out myself.”

After spending two nights in a Dartford hospital, van der Drift was moved yesterday evening to a centre in Northampton where specialists will assess the severity of damage to his left index finger.

Indeed, van der Drift believes it’s that injury rather than his broken bones that will determine when he’s back behind the wheel of a racing car again.

“I’m feeling a bit bruised and banged up but it’s not too bad,” he said. “I’ve got lots of pain killers so they’re helping. My ankle was operated on yesterday so now I need to get my finger sorted.

“It depends on my hand. I’m going to do my best to get back up to speed again. I don’t know how long I’ll be out, I just have to see how it goes in the next few weeks and how quickly I heel.”

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