F1 will always be dangerous, says Ecclestone

The 25-year-old’s death was announced in the early hours of Saturday morning, nine months after his 160mph horror smash in a rain-lashed Japanese Grand Prix. He was under medical life support at the Center Hospitalier Universitaire de Nice, France and diagnosed with “diffuse axonal injury”.


The Formula 1 supremo says Bianchi was a great talent lost to the sport but he believes the Frenchman would have wanted the sport to continue to evolve.

“It happened at one of the older race tracks, in the most challenging circumstances – wet weather, fading light, on a very demanding corner, over a blind brow”.

“It is at times like this that we are brutally reminded of how unsafe racing still remains”, they added.

He was the first Formula One driver to die of injuries received in a race since triple world champion Ayrton Senna at Imola in 1994.

Bianchi, 25, had been in a coma since the October 5 accident, in which he collided at high speed with a mobile crane which was being used to pick up another crashed auto.

Lending the association’s name to a fan survey that will have little or no influence on how the sport’s owners ultimately take it forward, is all well and good, but what the GPDA should really be focussing on, what it was formed for, is to represent the interests of its members, and the key interest of each and every one of them is safety.

“The tractor [recovery vehicle] should never have been there”.

“Hitting that thing [the tractor], it wouldn’t make any difference if you’d hit it with a saloon vehicle – if you’d hit it with a tank you’d have had problems”.

Formula One’s governing body has introduced a number of safety measures after the crash at Suzuka, including the use of a “virtual safety car” and making the area around the cockpit stronger.

Bianchi joined Marussia in 2013 and competed in 34 grands prix, notching two world championship points – still the team’s best result.


“It is only right that we pay tribute to a fine young man and a fine driver who was so unfortunate”, Ecclestone said on Sunday. “What happened was just tragic”, he said. We are now going to miss a very talented driver and a really nice person.

Jules Bianchi in 2013