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Formula 2 Driver Anthoine Hubert Killed At Spa-Francorchamps

Illustration for article titled Formula 2 Driver Anthoine Hubert Killed At Spa-Francorchamps
Photo: Charles Coates (Getty Images)

Formula 2 and the FIA have confirmed that 22-year-old French driver Anthoine Hubert has been killed as a result of an accident during the first few laps of the F2 race at Spa-Francorchamps.

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Footage from the accident appears to show that Hubert crashed into the outside wall before being struck by a fellow driver at speed.

Hubert was last year’s GP3 champion and 2013's French Formula 4 Champion. His ties with the Renault Formula One team offered promise that Hubert would become one of the next French F1 talents.

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The statement from the FIA reads as follows;

The Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) regrets to advise that a serious incident involving cars #12, #19 and #20 occurred at 17:07 on 31/08/19 as a part of the FIA Formula 2 Sprint Race at Spa-Francorchamps, round 17 of the season.

The scene was immediately attended by emergency and medical crews, and all drivers were taken to the medical centre.

As a result of the incident, the FIA regrets to inform that the driver of car #19, Antoine Hubert (FRA), succumbed to his injuries, and passed away at 18:35.

The driver of car #12, Juan-Manuel Correa (USA), is in a stable condition and is being treated at the CHU Liège hospital. More information on his condition will be provided when it becomes available.

The driver of car #20 Giuliano Alesi (FRA) was checked and declared fit at the medical centre.

The FIA is providing support to the event organisers and the relevant authorities, and has commenced an investigation into the incident.

Hubert’s results this season were promising. With two wins at and several other points-scoring finishes, Hubert was proving himself a formidable rookie.

The GP3 series folded in 2018, merging into the Formula 3 series. As such, Hubert will retain the title of reigning GP3 World Champion.

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Update: Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019 at 3:40 p.m. ET: F1 emailed a statement on Saturday, saying “Formula 1, Formula 2, and Formula 3 are deeply saddened” by Hubert’s death, and that out of respect, Sunday’s F2 race has been canceled.

The rest of the statement is as follows:

We would like to extend our deepest condolences to Anthoine’s family, loved ones, and friends. We would also like to send our heartfelt sympathies to the entire Arden team.

Anthoine has been part of our paddock since 2017. He was a fantastic driver who had a bright future ahead of him. He became GP3 Series Champion last year, and this season, he won twice in Formula 2, taking victories in Monaco, and at his home race in Le Castellet.

He was kind to everyone, always smiling, and his positive attitude was infectious.

He will be dearly missed.

Weekends at Jalopnik. Managing editor at A Girl's Guide to Cars. Lead IndyCar writer and assistant editor at Frontstretch. Novelist. Motorsport fanatic.

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DISCUSSION

I saw the video from one of the photog fence holes before the news came out that he had passed away. Makes it harder to watch now knowing he didn’t survive. I had seen the TV footage first, but it didn’t show exactly what happened from that angle or just how violent it was, but I did see the safety cell of Hubert’s car with the whole drivetrain ripped out of it. Initial reports were that the drivers had survived, but after I saw the second view from the photog fence hole, it was obvious he was likely barely holding on.

Gutted. Absolutely gutted.

Maybe not the best time to bring it up, but given the recent Jalopnik articles about how unsafe some IndyCars on ovals races are, this is a reminder that freak crashes can happen anywhere at anytime in racing. No matter how much the rulesmakers and engineers strive to make it safer or even just abandon certain tracks altogether, it will never, ever be 100% safe. Not that they should stop trying to make it safer, but that risk is always there and drivers willingly accept it, or at the very least try to put it at the back of their mind so they can compete.

Despite how cringe-worthy the Pocono wreck was, no one was seriously injured.

Rest in Peace, Anthoine. Taken way too soon. He had a promising future, if not in F1, then at the very least in sports cars.