Monday, 2 May 2011

V8 driver crawls clear as car turns into fireball

HOLDEN Commodore driver Karl Reindler was forced to flee for his life as his V8 Supercar exploded in flames in a horrifying race crash in Perth yesterday.

Reindler clawed his way out of the burning car after it stalled on the grid and was hit at high speed by rival driver Steve Owen, erupting into a fireball.

The West Australian's $600,000 machine was all but incinerated, the outside left a whitened shell and its interior heavily damaged.

Somehow Reindler escaped the inferno, although the 26-year-old suffered some burns to his hands and face in one of the most spectacular accidents in V8 Supercars history.

''Before I knew it I saw flames inside the car. I guess I panicked and tried to get out as quickly as I could,'' Reindler said before being taken to hospital. ''My body's fine, it's just my hands.

''I loaded the clutch up, and it stalled. I had my foot all the way down. I didn't even release the clutch. I couldn't get it going at all. There was nothing I could do.''

Owen escaped without serious injury but was taken to hospital after complaining of soreness, the front of his Holden badly burned in the crash at the start of the second race of the weekend at Barbagallo Raceway.

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