It was a Friday summer day in 1992, the 28th of August, when racecar driver Ayrton Senna da Silva was practicing on the Belgian Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in his McLaren. The famous Brazilian driver was making test laps so he could feel the track. This way, he could find out which setup would work best for his qualification race of this great Belgium prize.
All was going well, until he almost reached the finish of his test drive. There Ayrton Senna almost crashed into a horrible accident that had happened on the circuit. There was his colleague driver Erik Comas, stuck in his crashed Ligier while the engine was still running. The French racecar driver Comas laid there passed out in the middle of a huge smoke cloud, while oil continued to leak from his car.
Even though Ayrton Senna was driving at a high speed when he saw the crashed Ligier, he managed to steer just out of the way and get out of the car in no time. Although there was a dangerous risk of the Ligier exploding, Ayrton Senna didn’t hesitate for a second to help Comas. After turning the engine off, he dragged the unconscious Comas out of his car and saved his life.
When Erik Commas recalled the story, he commemorated Ayrton Senna with saying that “he was not only an extraordinary driver but also an extraordinary man. He saved my life in 1992 in Spa-Francorchamps when my car had hit the barriers. I had lost consciousness, but luckily, Ayrton noticed it immediately and pulled over to try to cut the electrical circuits of my car. At that point, there was a huge risk of my car exploding, because a lot of oil had already leaked from my car and it continued to do so. It is true that at that day he showed an unbelievable courage because there were still other cars on the way. Although the red flags slowed these cars down, the drivers didn’t know that we were crashed in the middle of the road. For me it was a truly heroic act, but Ayrton Senna simply regarded it a civic and normal act.”
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