Stock Car Racer Dies After Crash at Interlagos [Video]
Sondermann was doing his regular driving in the Copa Chevrolet Montana – a support race for the Brazilian Stock Car Championship – when he lost control of his car in the Curva do Cafe corner, leading into the main straight. He crashed heavily into the wall and was later on hit by another driver traveling at high speed, suffering serious head injuries that would shortly lead to his death.
The 29-year old's accident resembles almost identically to what happened 4 years ago to Brazilian stock car racer Rafeal Sperafico at the same track, in the exact same corner, back in 2007. Driving in the season finale for the Brazilian Stock Car championship, Sperafico too lost control of his car in the corner leading to the main straight and bounced back on the track after hitting the wall, being t-boned by another competitor and losing his life in the accident.
In 2007, when Sperafico's accident happened, he and Sondermann were teammates. In the meantime, in February this year, a motorcycle rider also lost his life in the same corner.
Following the event on Sunday, the aforementioned corner was unofficially dubbed 'Tamburello de Interlagos', a reference to the Tamburello corner that witnessed the deaths of Ayrton Senna and Roland Ratzenberger in the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix, at Imola. Following those two incidents, the corner has been massively re-profiled by the F1 organizers.
Shortly after the incident, well-known Brazilian drivers Rubens Barrichello, Bruno Senna, Nelson Piquet Jr and Luciano Burti have paid tribute on Twitter, with the last of them urging the circuit organizers to alter the Curva do Cafe corner to avoid accidents of this kind in the future.
“We need to find the room for that, like bringing down the bleachers for some run-off. Safety must come first,” he insisted in an interview with SporTV. “The solution exists and we need unity to make the changes before the next thing happens there.”