INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (May 19, 2015)-- A nasty wreck landed IndyCar driver James Hinchcliffe in the intensive care unit after Monday's practice. Hinchcliffe underwent surgery to remove a piece of his car's suspension from his leg.
Hinchcliffe is recovering, but won't be back on the track for the "foreseeable future."
"When he arrived he was critical we kind of stabilized him like we would any other trauma patient trying to evaluate hemorrhage control getting the patient to the operating room quickly," said IU Methodist Trauma Director Melissa Hockaday.
Doctors say time was on the driver's side as on site EMS workers rushed him to the hospital about 10 minutes away.
"We worked closely with IndyCar and IMS and Methodist Trauma Center to get a process in place if there's an injured driver, injured spectator whoever at the track that we're able to communicate quickly with the trauma center and we have a trauma center on site," said Hockaday.
This type of injury sounded all too familiar to former IndyCar driver Eliseo Salazar after this wreck during practice in Florida back in 1996.
"A piece of suspension, a wishbone, went through my right leg and went half way into the left leg. I can relate to that I know it's very painful, but in cases like this you get strength from you don't know where and I was able to come back and be in the front row of the Indy 500 three months later," Salazar said.
After Salazar's recovery, he has faith Hinchcliffe will be back behind the wheel stronger than before.
"You're an IndyCar driver, you're strong and I'm sure you'll be able to come back and I wish you all the best and if you want to talk about our experience sometimes we will be brothers of the same injury for the rest of our lives."