Da Matta hospitalized after colliding with deer

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:36 IST

Champ Car driver Cristiano da Matta needed surgery to remove a ruptured blood vessel in his head after his race car collided with a deer.

Da Matta hospitalized after colliding with deer

Elkhart lake:

Champ Car driver Cristiano da Matta needed surgery to remove a ruptured blood vessel in his head after his race car collided with a deer that wandered onto the track during a test session at Road America on Thursday. Da Matta was unconscious when he was airlifted to Theda Clark Memorial Hospital in Neenah after the crash, and remained unconscious as of Thursday night, Champ Car series spokesman Steve Shunck said. Champ Car Director of Medical Affairs Dr. Chris Pinderski said a CT scan at the hospital showed da Matta had a subdural hematoma. "He was urgently taken to the operating room for surgical removal of the hematoma and is now being observed in the intensive care unit,'' Pinderski said. The RuSport team said updates concerning da Matta's condition will be released when they become available. The 32-year-old Brazilian has 12 career Champ Car victories - including four straight wins in his championship season of 2002, tying a series record. He left Champ Car after winning the championship and drove for the Toyota team in Formula One in 2003 and 2004. In 28 starts, he finished a career-best sixth in three races. Da Matta returned to Champ Car last year to win a race at Portland and tie for 11th in the standings. He is sixth in the standings this season after finishing second in Sunday's race in San Jose, California. Da Matta began the season with Dale Coyne Racing, then moved to RuSport team at midseason after AJ Allmendinger was fired. Da Matta is single and lives in Miami. RuSport also announced on Thursday that Justin Wilson, da Matta's teammate, would not participate in the final day of Road America test on Friday. The Champ Car series races at Road America on Sept 24. (AP)

Topics : Formula 1 Cristiano Da Matta
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