HONG KONG (Reuters) – International motor racing boss Jean Todt has promised that the FIA will investigate the horrific Sunday morning air crash at the Macau Formula 3 Grand Prix, which left the German driver Sophia Floersch, 17, with a fractured spine.
Floersch was catapulted off the road into a bunker of photographers after crashing into the back of one car and swerved over another as he traveled more than 275 kilometers an hour (171 mph) on the tight street circuit.
The teenager was aware when she was taken to the hospital in the former Portuguese colony from where she tweeted that she was "well" and would undergo surgery on Monday.
"After the serious incident in Macau today, the FIA is mobilized to help those involved and analyze what happened," said Todt, president of the International Automobile Federation (FIA).
"We will monitor the situation and draw the necessary conclusions."
Japanese driver Sho Tsuboi, who struck Floersch after the initial crash, was also taken to the hospital complaining of back pain, but the Macau Grand Prix Organizing Committee said in a statement that he had been discharged after the treatment.
Macau Grand Prix doctor Dr. Chan Wai Sin said two photographers and a track marshal were also injured in the crash and were hospitalized for treatment.
The falls are frequent at the Macau Grand Prix, which this year, in its 65th edition, hosted six car and motorcycle races in the 6.2 km of Guia Circuit through the streets of the island.
Last year, British motorcyclist Daniel Hegarty died after crashing the security barrier during a race, the eighth driver to have lost his life on the circuit since 1973.
Three motorcyclists were rushed to hospital after crashes at the circuit this week with Britain's Andrew Dudgeon demanding that a metal rod be inserted into his spine after an accident in practice.
Dudgeon comes from the Isle of Man in Britain, where 270 motorcyclists have died in competitions on the island's TT circuits for the last 120 years.
(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney in Sydney, editing by Amlan Chakraborty)