Fernando Alonso admitted that he didn't have a clue what had happened when his Ferrari was suddenly given a massive jolt from behind and the world suddenly exploded into a kaleidoscope of flying cars and shards of carbon fibre wreckage all around him.
"I had no idea what happened," he said back at the Ferrari trailer after the incident. "I had overtaken the two Saubers when I felt as though I had been run into by a train!
"Immediately after the impact, I stayed in the cockpit for a few seconds, but then there was the start of a fire and the foam from the extinguishers meant I couldn't breathe," he said, explaining why he'd appeared groggy when he was finally assisted from the remains of his car. "I tried to tell the team on the radio that I was alright, but I couldn't."
Concerned marshalls insisted that he go for a checkup with the medical staff, but Alonso said that everything was basically fine despite the ferocity of the accident that led many watching on TV monitors to physically recoil as Romain Grosjean's car sailed across the Ferrari just inches away from Alonso's helmet.
"I went to the medical centre immediately after the accident but everything is alright," he said. "I'm fine, except my left shoulder hurts a bit ... the pain only comes from the whiplash.
"Now I can say that, given the misfortune of having had an accident like this, I am lucky to be able to get back in the car in just a few days," he added. "The level of safety of these cars is very high and today we saw further proof of that."
While he didn't know what was going on at the time, he's since had a chance to watch replays of the accident on television and said that he wasn't getting angry with anyone over the crash, despite the race stewards' decision to hand Grosjean a one-race ban for causing the initial collision that sparked the multi-car wreck. (See separate story
"I am not angry with Grosjean, he definitely didn't do it on purpose," he said. "It was a case of me being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
However, Alonso continued: "I think that certain drivers should try and take fewer risks at the start: it's a bit of a tendency currently in the junior formulae, but it would be better, if right from the start of their career, they got used to respecting more strictly the rules relating to behaviour on track."