Jules Bianchi’s condition “stagnant” according to father Philippe

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Eight months on from his tragic accident at the Japanese Grand Prix, Jules Bianchi’s father Philippe has said that his son’s condition is “stagnant” in a French TV interview.

Speaking to Canal+, Philippe Bianchi expressed his family’s grief and concern about Jules’ condition ahead of this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix, the site of his finest hour in F1 for Marussia F1 Team in 2014 when he finished ninth to score his first points in the sport.

Following this epic high, Bianchi was being tipped as a future Ferrari driver and had been poised to join Sauber for the 2015 season.

However, all of these plans were scuppered when he sustained severe head injuries after crashing into a recovery vehicle towards the end of the Japanese Grand Prix. Jules remains in a coma in hospital in Nice, France.

“The first thing is Jules is alive,” Bianchi Sr. told Canal+. “That’s the most important thing for us.

“He’s fighting with the weapons he has, but in neurological terms I’m not sure he is able to do much now. Seeing him fighting gives a lot of hope to his loved ones, and it’s important for us. I think we all stopped living that day, the fifth of October.

“It’s something you can never expect. It’s not what Jules wants, being in a hospital bed. It’s not his life, it’s not what we want either. But we have to keep hope.”

Philippe Bianchi explained how Jules was not making the progress that the family had hoped for, and that his condition is “stagnant”.

“While there is life, there is hope, even though after a while you are hoping for a miracle,” Bianchi said.

“Every day is difficult. The situation is stagnant. Jules’ neurological progress is not what we would like it to be.

“When we get up every morning we think of Jules’ life. We think also of his death. We have to think about death because we are in a situation where we know a lot of things can happen. It’s terrible.”

Amid the glitz and glamor of Monaco this weekend, the F1 paddock will continue to think of Bianchi and his continued fight.

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.