Norway’s Petter Solberg lost his chance of a podium finish in the Rally of France Alsace on Saturday when he crashed out in bizarre fashion.  Solberg, who started the day in fourth place, veered off the road on the opening stage, careered through a vineyard, over the road and into another vineyard before crashing into a utility pole.

The pole then fell, narrowly missing spectators who had come to aid Solberg. The high tension wires struck cars and wires in the vineyard, producing sparks and puffs of smoke.  Solberg retired from the event and there were no reports of any injuries.