F1 test driver loses eye

Marussia's Spanish test driver Maria De Villota has lost her right eye. Her formula One team says she remains critically ill in hospital after surgery for facial and head injuries. She was involved in an accident at Duxford airfield.

Calls for safety changes in Formula One after accident

Pedro de la Rosa and Felipe Massa believe safety changes need to be made following the accident this week that cost Marussia test driver Maria De Villota her right eye.

Pedro de la Rosa, chairman of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association said: "We will put the facts on the table to see if there is anything we need to change to improve.

"We need to make sure, between the FIA, the teams and the GPDA, that we make changes for the future because it's not good enough.

Ferrari's Felipe Massa
Ferrari's Felipe Massa in 2010 Credit: Press Association

Massa, involved in his own accident three years ago that nearly cost him his life said:

"The FIA need to understand as well, to put everything in place for maximum safety that we need to have."

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Test driver 'conscious'

Marussia test driver Maria De Villota is conscious after suffering what were initially described as "life-threatening injuries" in a test crash earlier today.

The 32-year-old Spaniard crashed into a support truck and it is understood she has been receiving treatment for head and face injuries.

"Maria is conscious and medical assessments are ongoing. The team will await the outcome of these assessments before providing further comment. The team's first priority at this time is Maria and her family."

– Marussia team statement

Messages of support flood in for Maria

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Terrible accident For Maria de Villota, Marussia F1 team test driver. My thoughts are with Maria and her family at this very difficult time.

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@skysportsf1 will update you as soon as they know anything more on Maria's condition. Thinking of her and everyone at @marussia_f1team.

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Just heard about Maria De Villota's accident. Hoping and praying she is ok @marussia_f1team

Marussia F1 team release statement on crash

At approximately 09.15am, the Marussia F1 Team's test driver, Maria De Villota, had an accident in the team's MR-01 race car at Duxford Airfield where she was testing the car for the first time. The accident happened at the end of her first installation run and involved an impact with the team's support truck. Maria has been transferred to hospital. Once her medical condition has been assessed, a further statement will be issued.

– Marussia spokesperson

The F1 Marussia Cosworth team are based in Banbury and there is further coverage on this story at ITV Meridian.

Pictures: Maria de Villota before race incident

Maria de Villota is currently being treated for life threatening injuries at Addenbrookes Hospital after a collision with a lorry in her F1 test vehicle at Duxford Airfield in Cambridgeshire.

The following images were published on her team Marussia F1's twitter page before the race.

Villota interviewed before taking to the track today.
Villota interviewed before taking to the track today. Credit: Marussia F1 Team Twitter
Villota in her F1 test car before the incident.
Villota in her F1 test car before the incident. Credit: Marussia F1 Team Twitter

For more images at the scene visit ITV Anglia's website.

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Maria De Villota factfile

  • Villota is the daughter of retired Formula One driver Emilio de Villota.
  • This is the first season her team have competed as Marussia, after the Russian sports car manufacturer bought a controlling stake in the former Virgin team.
  • Since 2001, Villota has competed in various Spanish motor races.

F1 test driver Maria de Villota suffers 'life-threatening injuries' in crash

Maria de Villota, a test driver for the Marussia F1 team, was rushed to hospital with life-threatening injuries after her car collided with a lorry at Duxford Airfield this morning.

East of England Ambulance Service spokesman Gary Sanderson said:

A woman has sustained life threatening injuries and following treatment at the scene by paramedics, she has been taken to Addenbrookes Hospital for further care.

The accident is said to have happened at low speed after Villota pulled off the track following a lap during which she reached speeds of about 200mph.

Spanish race driver thought to be involved in crash

The crash involved a car from the Marussia F1 team.

The team's only female driver is Maria De Villota, 32, originally from Madrid, who has been racing since 1998.

This morning, the team's official Twitter account confirmed testing would take place at Duxford.

Referring to Villota, the team added:

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@mariavillota had her final seat-fitting & pedal test at our Banbury HQ & then headed north to the Imperial War Museum, ready to do battle

Driver hurt in F1 race car crash

A driver has been seriously injured in a collision involving a racing car.

Cambridgeshire Police said they were called to Duxford Airfield, home of the Duxford Imperial War Museum, at 9.26am to reports of a crash between a Formula One-style car and a lorry.

The female driver of the car is believed to have suffered serious injuries.

Gary Sanderson, spokesman for the East of England Ambulance Service, said paramedics were at the scene.

It is thought the car was taking part in testing at the time.