INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – One year ago on this very day, IndyCar driver James Hinchcliffe was seriously injured when his car made right-side contact with the turn 3 barrier at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during Indy 500 practice.
He lost a “significant” amount of blood and suffered serious injuries to his pelvic area and upper left thigh.
Last year, Hinchcliffe vowed to return to racing, and next week he’ll compete in the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.
Hinch said last year’s accident made him a stronger person in every way.
He also included on social media a new link to a 4-minute long short film, released Wednesday, about his return to racing after a fiery crash at IMS.
“When I hit the wall, I hit with 126Gs,” Hinch is quoted in the film.
The driver said the impact was the largest recorded in IndyCar history. While driving at more than 200 miles per hour, the suspension on his car came loose. He hit a wall, and a piece of the suspension impaled him. He lost so much blood he nearly died.
“At the rate that I was losing blood, if they’d have gotten me in the OR any later, there was a good chance that I wouldn’t have made it,” he told FOX59’s Lindy Thackston in March.
Hinch’s new video shows the mental and physical toughness needed to get back on the track. Though he said he doesn’t think about the accident daily, it did alter how he lives and what he looks for in life.
“It definitely changes you. It’s an appreciation of life is really what it comes down to. It’s a very fragile thing. It’s not taking for granted the little things,” he said, “Taking advantage of the little things in life and the people around you and the moments you have with those people. It’s something I have a much greater respect for and appreciation of.”
Hinch finished third in last weekend's Angie's List Grand Prix of Indianapolis.