Kevin Swindell has been released from hospital in Des Moines, his family has confirmed Friday via a statement released to media. Swindell was injured at Knoxville Raceway last week, and father Sammy Swindell provided an update earlier this week after a successful second surgery.
The statement reads as follows:
“Kevin has been released from Des Moines Mercy Hospital today after an eight-day stay at the hospital following last week’s accident at Knoxville Raceway.
“The doctors and staff at Des Moines Mercy have been generous to us, both in their care for Kevin and their patience and understanding to all of us throughout our time here. We will forever be grateful to them.
“We cannot begin to thank everyone in the racing community for the support that you’ve shown to Kevin. The thoughtfulness of all of you is seen and felt and we feel stronger each day because of you. Kevin feels the power of your prayers and they are working. Our motto is: God showed up and showed out!
“We’re also grateful for the donations that have come in and the continued fundraisers that race fans, organizations and tracks have started to help Kevin. We know there is a long road ahead of him and the donations will help ease the burden of the medical expenses we’ll have and allow Kevin to focus solely on his health.
“Bank of America has set up an account for donations to Kevin. If you’d like to make a donation or are getting questions of where someone can donate, the information is below.
“To make a donation to Kevin’s Recovery Fund, please make a check out to Kevin Swindell and write “Recovery Fund” on the memo line. Checks can be mailed to:
Kevin Swindell Recovery Fund
c/o Spire Sports + Entertainment
P.O. Box 638
Cornelius, N.C. 28031
“If you’d prefer to wire funds, please call Spire Sports + Entertainment at 704-897-2880 for information on how to do so.
“Donations can be made online at http://www.stevekingfoundation.com. Please be sure to type “Kevin Swindell Recovery Fund” in the comment section to ensure your donation goes to Kevin.
“Again, from all of us, thank you.
“Kevin, Sammy and Amy Swindell and Jordan Armstrong.”
Mario Andretti’s last Formula One victory is also the last by an American driver in more than 42 years on the international open-wheel road racing series.
If you had told Andretti that while he was celebrating on the Grand Prix of the Netherlands podium on Aug. 27, 1978 at the Vandzoort circuit, he wouldn’t have believed it.
“Absolutely not,” Andretti told Kyle Petty during the most recent “Coffee With Kyle” episode (video above). “It’s a shame. Somehow we have so much talent here, and either there’s no invitation or something there. But I think it’s time to give some of this young talent that, in my opinion, is absolutely capable.”
The Dutch GP was the last of Andretti’s 12 victories in F1 and came during his championship season. No one since has come close to matching his success in F1.
Andretti’s son, Michael, took a full-time ride with McLaren in 1993 but left with three races remaining in a season marred by crashes and mechanical problems.
But Mario Andretti believes Andretti Autosport has another rising star with F1-caliber ability.
“Colton Herta is one that comes to mind,” Mario Andretti said. “As a young lad, his dad sent him to Europe, he was doing Formula 3, and he knows most of the circuits there. He’s trained. He’s showed in his rookie season and won some premium races at COTA (and Laguna Seca), beat two of the very best Indy has to offer (in) Will Power and Scott Dixon.
“This is one kid I’d love to see him get a break over there to fly the U.S. colors again.”
Herta, 20, seems interested in exploring an F1 leap over the next few years. After winning Sept. 13 at Mid-Ohio from the pole position (his third career victory in the NTT IndyCar Series), the No. 88 Dallara-Honda driver is ranked fourth in the standings in his sophomore year and regarded as one of the series’ top prospects.
If #F1 wants to start looking around for an American driver, Colton Herta has a suggestion for where that search should start. https://t.co/71PVeu6aBj
Herta recently told RACER.com “I’d love to give Formula 1 a crack” but said he also would be happy driving in IndyCar and IMSA.
A naturalized U.S. citizen who told Petty about spending several years with his family in an Italian refugee camp before coming to America, Mario Andretti said F1 brought an enormous sense of patriotic pride.
“Formula One is like the Olympics in a sense,” he said. “You’re in a different country, a different continent. When you earn that highest step of the podium, they play your national anthem. That’s when you take nothing for granted. You feel like I’m representing my country, and the proudest moments are those.
“I’d just like to see some other American drivers experience that. It’s time.”
During the “Coffee With Kyle” conversation, Andretti also discussed:
–His versatility as a winner in IndyCar, sports cars, NASCAR and Formula One;
–His 1967 Daytona 500 victory and how he enjoyed racing with crew chief Jake Elder at the famed Holman-Moody team;
–Why he delayed his entry to F1 for a few years because of his earnings power in IndyCar. “I always say I’d race for free, but at the same time, you’re thinking of family and the future,” he said. “It was in the back of your mind that you can’t give up the earning power of IndyCar. That kept me from going full time in Formula One, but I always said that sometime in my career, I’d have to devote a period to Formula One.”
–On what it was like racing in an era when driver deaths were more prevalent. “If you’re going to do this, you’re not going to dwell on those negatives,” Andretti said. “There’s no way. You knew it was present. Especially in the ‘60s at the beginning of the season at the drivers meetings, you couldn’t help but look around and say, ‘I wonder who is not going to be here at the end of the season.’ We’d lose four to five guys. In ’64, we lost six guys.
“It’s something if you dwell on that, you’re going to take on a different profession. It’s a desire and love to want to drive that overcame all that and then the confidence it’s not going to happen to me. And then you pray.”