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Monday, 9 July, 2001, 16:34 GMT 17:34 UK
Atkinson unharmed after car crash
Atkinson with wife Sunetra: Not his first near miss
Atkinson with wife Sunetra: Not his first near miss
Actor and car enthusiast Rowan Atkinson has walked away unhurt from a crash at a race meeting after his vehicle left the track and collided with a barrier.

The star, best-known for his roles as the hapless Mr Bean and the conniving Blackadder, had the near miss after crashing the Aston Martin V8 Zagato at an enthusiasts' meeting.

He was competing in the Aston Martin Owner's Club event at the Croft Racing Circuit on the County Durham, North Yorkshire border on Sunday.

A spokeswoman for Atkinson's agents, at London-based PBJ management, said today she was aware of the incident and that he was unscathed.

Atkinson found huge success in the Blackadder series
Atkinson found huge success in the Blackadder series
"He races quite a lot and he is absolutely fine," she said.

Steve Cooper, financial director of Croft, added: "It was a racing incident and he was shaken up but was not injured.

"I believe his brakes had failed or did not work and he went off the track and hit a barrier."

The race - the seventh of the meeting - had to be restarted after Atkinson was checked by a doctor and his battered red sports car was recovered from the track.

He then left the circuit, where he last raced two years ago.

Rescue

This is not the first time Atkinson has survived a near miss.

In March this year he was said to have taken control of a Cessna 202 aircraft after the pilot passed out - saving the lives of his wife and two children.

Atkinson is believed to have been on a family holiday in Kenya when the drama unfolded.

In 1999, the star also walked away unhurt after crashing a 650,000 MacLaren which he had bought to celebrate the success of the film Bean.

See also:

07 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Bean gets animated
27 Oct 99 | Entertainment
Mr Bean crashes sports car
13 Sep 99 | Entertainment
Blackadder back to the future
24 Mar 01 | Showbiz
Atkinson 'averted air disaster'
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