IMSA team owner/driver Tim Pappas suffered fractures to his arm and pelvis on Friday in a punishing crash at the bottom of The Chase during practice for the Bathurst 12 Hour event. The rear of the American’s No. 540 Porsche 911 GT3 R was shortened by more than one foot in an impact that saw flames erupt from the damaged vehicle.
Spectators close to the impact grabbed fire extinguishers from a corner marshal’s post to put out the blaze while emergency responders made their way to the crash site.
The Bathurst impact forced Pappas’ Black Swan Racing team to withdraw from the event.
“Of course it’s a difficult way to end the weekend,” Pappas said. “After last year’s victory we came in very confident on the weekend, but ultimately I’m fortunate that the accident wasn’t worse than it was. Thanks to all the guys as well as Porsche Motorsport for putting together a safe car, the injuries could have been more severe. We’ll regroup and see what the next steps are.”
Friday’s event-ending crash is the second unfortunate outcome for the program in less than a week.
Adding to the misery of having Black Swan’s older 911 GT3 R written off in Australia, the team’s new Porsche also incurred significant damage on Sunday at the Rolex 24 At Daytona when Scuderia Corsa’s Toni Vilander slammed into the back of the No. 540 911 GT3 R at the Bus Stop.