Three days after getting hit in the helmet by a piece of bodywork during the Grand Prix of Indianapolis and being diagnosed with a concussion, James Hinchcliffe is “progressing well” according to INDYCAR medical director Dr. Michael Olinger but has not yet been cleared to drive.
In a medical update released this afternoon by INDYCAR, it was disclosed that the Andretti Autosport driver was evaluated today by the series’ medical team in conjunction with its neurosurgical consultant.
While Hinchcliffe was not cleared to return to the cockpit of the No. 27 United Fiber and Data Honda, Olinger said that he has been cleared to resume “light training” with his athletic trainer.
The update states that Hinchcliffe will be re-evaluated on Thursday.
On Lap 57 of Saturday’s Grand Prix on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Hinchcliffe’s helmet was struck while he and the rest of the field were going down the Hulman Boulevard back stretch.
He was able to turn his car off-course at Turn 7 and after stopping, he was taken away on a stretcher while holding his head. He was then transported to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis but was released later that night.
Hinchcliffe made a brief appearance on Sunday at IMS during the start of Indianapolis 500 practice before heading back to his home in the city for more rest.
For the time being, E.J. Viso is filling in for Hinchcliffe – who took to Twitter today to thank his supporters.
Lewis Hamilton believes that this weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will be remembered as the last race with good-looking Formula 1 cars ahead of the introduction of the ‘Halo’ cockpit protection for next year.
Officials from the FIA and F1 Strategy Group confirmed earlier this year that the Halo would be fitted to all cars from the 2018 season in a bid to improve safety standards, with the deaths of Justin Wilson and Jules Bianchi putting head protection high on the agenda for the series’ chiefs.
Hamilton has long made his opposition to the Halo clear, believing it will ruin the look of F1 cars, and echoed his thoughts ahead of the final Halo-less race in Abu Dhabi this weekend.
“It’s the last year of looking good I think in the cars. It’s the last race where the cars will look good,” Hamilton said.
“I think next year, it’s all downhill from there in terms of how they look.
“But safety will go up at least, and maybe it could be successful in some way.”
Hamilton’s F1 title rival Sebastian Vettel was less bothered about the change, believing the field will adjust and move on.
“The cars will look different next year. Everything I’ve seen so far looks different, but on the other hand it is something we all get used to,” Vettel said.
“But no doubt the cars look better now, but we’ll get used to it, and we’ll work on the aesthetics so it can be better. It is less of a big deal.”
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo shared Vettel’s view, saying: “I don’t think it’s gonna be as dramatic as most people make it out to be.”