After Horrific Crash, Indy Driver’s Spinal Damage Is Unknown


He was airlifted to the hospital after a severe crash at Pocono destroyed his car and left him with significant injuries on Sunday, August 19th.

During the 2018 ABC Supply 500, following a restart on Lap 7, 29-year-old Canadian INDYCAR driver Robert Wickens was running side-by-side with American Indy champ Ryan Hunter-Reay when Wickens tried to pass him.

The cars slightly touched, causing Hunter-Reay’s car to slam into the outer wall, but Wickens got dragged along with him and launched up over the wall – flying into the catch fence and ripping his car to shreds as he flipped over and over.

The fencing he catapulted into was shredded and so was his car – which came to rest near an inside wall and was reduced just to the tub of the car. Emergency personnel rushed to his aid and he was flown via medivac to an Allentown, PA hospital.

Now, while he was reported as “awake and alert” after arriving at the hospital, doctors are unsure of how much spinal damage he has suffered…

In a statement released Tuesday by his team, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, Wickens’ condition was revealed as non-life-threatening and they explained the surgeries he had undergone in the previous 24 hours.

“Robert Wickens underwent surgery Monday, August 20 at Lehigh Valley Hospital – Cedar Crest to stabilize a thoracic spinal fracture associated with a spinal cord injury,” they wrote, adding “Titanium rods and screws were placed successfully in Wickens’ spine during the surgery, which was performed without complication.”

While he came out of the procedure with great success, doctors are still left to determine exactly how severe his spinal cord injury is – and that’s something they have explained is unknown right now.

“The severity of the spinal cord injury is indeterminate at this time,” the statement continued. “He is expected to undergo further surgeries to treat the fractures in his lower extremities and right forearm. He remains in stable condition.”

After witnessing the wreck live on television, many were quick to pray for Wickens as they could tell from the footage that it was a horrible crash. He is truly lucky to have survived.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Robert Wickens as he works toward recovering from this frightening ordeal.

Watch the full video of the Pocono crash below. 

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