995. Audi crash at 2011 LeMans stays within retaining wall

YouTube download / Allan McNish hits the barrier and rolls over near the Dunlop Bridge after a collision with another car, his Audi R8 literally disintegrating, which dissipated the energy inside the cockpit and likely saved him from serious injury or even death in the 2011 LeMans. 
 
This is the latest segment in a Headline Surfer multimedia compilation of the Top 1,000 "Worst of the Worst: Motorsports Crashes" captured on video or still images, with an emphasis on the need for constant vigilance in keeping drivers, crew members, emergency workers, and especially spectators, safe at racing events around the globe.​ There's a full description below on the premise of this multimedia feature along with a recap of previous segments.
 
By HENRY FREDERICK
Headline Surfer

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- During the 2011 running of the 24 hours of Le Mans, driver Allan McNish destroyed his No. 3 Audi RB early on in a spectacular crash early on, careening into a retaining wall, and though some debris from the shattered car, which fortunately did not injure nearby spectators nor the driver himself.

Luckily.

Here is a synopsis of what happened as described by All Racing Legends: Within the first hour of the race, the Audi R8 No. 3 driven by Allan McNish hit the barrier and rolled over near the Dunlop Bridge after a collision with the No. 58 GTE Pro class Ferrari 458 Italia, driven by Anthony Beltoise, after it had rejoined the track from the pit lane and was passing the slower Ferrari just after the Dunlop Bridge.

McNish had started from fifth on the grid and by the second lap and was running second. The crash was severe and threw the Audi into the air after hitting the crash barrier beyond the gravel trap. The Audi was effectively destroyed, but McNish walked away from the accident, while Beltoise, after assistance, rejoined the track with his car having sustained bodywork damage.

Allan McNiff's crash in the 2011 24 Hours of LeMans race / Headline SurferHere is a synopsis of what happened as described by All Racing Legends: Within the first hour of the race, the Audi R8 No. 3 driven by Allan McNish hit the barrier and rolled over near the Dunlop Bridge after a collision with the No. 58 GTE Pro class Ferrari 458 Italia, driven by Anthony Beltoise, after it had rejoined the track from the pit lane and was passing the slower Ferrari just after the Dunlop Bridge.

McNish had started from fifth on the grid and by the second lap and was running second. The crash was severe and threw the Audi into the air after hitting the crash barrier beyond the gravel trap. The Audi was effectively destroyed, but McNish walked away from the accident, while Beltoise, after assistance, rejoined the track with his car having sustained bodywork damage.

At the 2012 LeMans, McNish made a driving error and cost himself and his No. 2 Audi team an almost-certain first place finish by crashing by the car a few hours before the finish. McNish fared better earlier in the 2012 racing season, when he co-drove the No. 8 Starworks Motorsport Riley-Ford to a second place finish at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona at Daytona International Speedway.

Allan McNish, race car driver / Headline Surfer®FAST FACTS: McNish retires in 2013
On Dec. 17 2013, Allan McNish announced his retirement from Audi Sport and from racing full-time. He has not ruled out racing individual events in the future. McNish also works for BBC Sport as a commentator and pundit for their Formula One coverage.
 
Did You Know?
Allan McNish lives in Monaco with his wife Kelly and their two children. Prior to his marriage, McNish's stag party in Dumfries was attended by Dario Franchitti and Marino Andretti and included watching a Queen of the South football match. McNish speaks English and French. Source: Wikipedia 
 
Premise for the series: 
Motorsports fans are drawn to racing for different reasons: The excitement of speed, skill of drafting & passing; strategies on when to pit for fuel, tires or repairs; the will to win and so forth. Ultimately, though, it's the big crashes like th one here at left from Daytona that fans seem to like more than anything. And though nobody wishes serious injury or death to drivers, crew members, emergency personnel & especially spectators, the sad reality is carnage is always lurking. Despite the latest technology & improvements in aerodynamics of vehicles, driver equipment and enhanced track safety features, the fine line between life & death is always at play in any given sanctioned motorsport. Given that Headline Surfer® puts such an emphasis on racing with Daytona Beach International Speedway, the 24/7 internet news outlet is counting down its listing of the top 1,000 Worst of the Worst motorsports crashes. While on the surface it may come across as gratuitous gore to critics, there can never be enough discussion about the need for constant vigilance in looking at safety.
 
Henry Frederick Picture

Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories narly eveenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in Wst Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.