Normally (I would hope) when someone experiences a near-fatal crash, one would expect one’s colleagues to offer some words of encouragement; maybe a quick pick me up or a humorous anecdote to cheer up the injured person. Any criticisms could probably wait until a bit later.
But that’s just me.
Marcel Steiner, the winner of the race in which Richard Hammond suffered a horrible crash, had some choice words for the Hamster. According to The Sun, Steiner discusses how he and other professional drivers meticulously studied the track before the race, whereas:
“Superheroes like Hammond, on the other hand, only appear shortly beforehand at the track and thereby take massive risks…it wouldn’t have happened to a real pro”
Well, he’s not totally wrong. According to Patrick Falk, the director of Auto Sport Switzerland, he wants to know if there was serious preparation leading up to the race, or if Hammond’s participation was green lit spontaneously:
“Since Hammond did not participate in the official race but in the show part, we do not have access to him or his car.
Normally, professional racers take the route the day before with the bike and deal with the conditions on the spot. We doubt Hammond had time for this.”
Video still of the crash
Falk reiterated that he does not intend to launch an investigation; he merely wants to know if the organizers had enforced regulations on Hammond. Swiss car journalist Peter Wyss echos Flak’s sentiments, pointing out that there were actually many security breaches.
“Outside the competition, people went up the mountain without a helmet and with excessive speed.”
Wyss mentioned that other organizers would have been much more restrictive with safety. However, with all the criticisms against the event organizers comes a rebuttal from Christian Smid, the hill climb organizer himself:
“Hammond’s participation in the hill climb was prepared several weeks before the event.”
At least with that statement, we know that they didn’t just allow Hammond in the race willy-nilly on the spot, but we still have no details regarding the proper preparation and safety precautions.
Either way, I’m sure we’re all glad that Hammond is ok (mostly) and wish him a speedy recovery!
All images courtesy of The Sun.