After his single-seater career, Herbert switched to sports cars with great success, including victory in the 2002 12 Hours of Sebring with this Champion Audi R8
Johnny of the ready smile and blonde hair was a motor racing shooting star who might have aspired to becoming the new Jim Clark. His rise to fame, however, came to a sudden—even if temporary—standstill after a horrendous 10-car, 150 mph Formula 3000 accident while driving Jordan Racing’s Reynard-Ford Cosworth at Brands Hatch, England, in 1988 that left Herbert with crushed lower legs, ankles and feet. It looked like the end of his racing career, never mind his mercurial rise to fame. He would never be the same again.
At that Brands International Formula 3000 weekend, Johnny took pole position in his Camel-sponsored car, but started badly and was 3rd into Paddock Bend, just ahead of Gregor Foitek. The two of them banged wheels at Druids, charged on to the Graham Hill and into the Grand Prix circuit, where Gregor tried to pass with two wheels on the grass at around 150 mph. Foitek’s right-front wheel hit Herbert’s left rear and that set off the 10-car explosion during which Johnny’s car slammed into a nearby bridge head-on, and that shattered the car’s nose, as well as tearing off its front suspension. All of which left Herbert’s feet hanging out of where the nose had been as the Reynard then crashed into a barrier.
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