John Grant says that he is lucky to be alive after one of the biggest accidents in recent seasons of historic racing. His McLaren M8C Can-Am car speared off the track at Brands Hatch after suffering total brake failure during the Interserie Revival race at the Masters Festival.
After a violent impact with the barriers, which folded the front of the tub through almost 90 degrees, the car suffered a signiﬁcant ﬁre in the cockpit area. With Grant still trapped in the wreckage only swift action by the marshals saved his life.
Grant, a former chairman of the MSA, was trapped in the remains of the McLaren for nearly an hour and a half as rescue crews worked to free him. He was conscious throughout the rescue and was then airlifted to hospital with two broken legs, broken ribs, cuts and burns.
Former Orwell Supersports Cup champion Grant had the brake pedal go to the ﬂoor on the rush towards Paddock Hill Bend. He paid tribute to the work of the marshals and rescue crews.
“This was an enormous accident, and my survival with such modest personal damage is down to many different people,” said Grant as he recovered in hospital. “I would particularly like to express my gratitude to the marshals who were on the scene immediately and who displayed the tremendous professionalism in dealing with the accident which we have come to expect in the UK.
“The medical team was brilliant and deserves praise for the reassuring and meticulous way in which I was looked after.”
Book reviews, March 1962, March 1962
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