Pascal Wehrlein, Manor, Sepang International Circuit, 2016

Wearing HANS wouldn’t have changed injury – Wehrlein

2017 F1 season

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Pascal Wehrlein says the injuries which kept him out of participating in the first test session of 2017 would not have been lessened if he had been wearing a Head And Neck Safety device.

Wehrlein did not have a HANS on when he rolled a car while competing in the Race of Champions last month. However he strenuously denied claims he had suffered a neck injury.

“It’s just the back,” he told media at the Circuit de Catalunya. “I was very surprised when I saw the news that people were writing it’s my neck because my neck is totally fine.”

Wehrlein said he “just forgot” to wear his HANS on the occasion he crashed. “I was wearing it always and that time I just forgot it. But it didn’t change anything.”

“If it would be a neck injury then maybe yes but it’s a back injury.”

Immediately after the crash Wehrlein didn’t suspect his injuries were serious enough to keep him from driving.

“I was already speaking to Sebastian about the next day and felt completely fine,” he said. “But after a crash you always go to the doctors and check yourself, and they said it’s better if you don’t drive tomorrow.”

“And then I went to the doctors again back in Europe and they said I should skip this test. Let’s see what they will say.”

A medical check-up at the end of the week will determine whether Wehrlein can return to the cockpit for the second test. He said it “wouldn’t be too bad” if he only has to miss the first test, but if he’s ruled out of the second then “it’s another story, we have to see.”

Wehrlein said the crash was only the second time in his career he had flipped a car over. He rolled a kart in 2005 during his first season of karting.

“Other than that I never had a big crash or something where I was injured before.”

“Last year I had surgery with my wrist at the beginning of the year so that was quite painful the first few races. But I never took an injury from crash.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 4 comments on “Wearing HANS wouldn’t have changed injury – Wehrlein”

    1. Constantijn Blondel
      27th February 2017, 17:41

      Speaking of missed-testing due to injury, and with apologies for being slightly parallel-to-topic, but has anyone ever released what really happened with Alonso’s mystery crash in ’15 ?

      1. Yeah, well, he crashed into the wall in a stupid angle, suffered a concussion, and was put on sick leave for the next month or so. Alonso’s custom-built steering system reportedly contributed to the accident and was therefore replaced with the standard spec steering system.
        I’m afraid it doesn’t get much more ‘real’ than that. Asking for more ‘real’ info might be tantamount to asking for something that isn’t there.

    2. Two things interest me in this. Firstly, Pascal wasn’t in everyone’s good books at RoC London. If there was a procedure to uphold or official with… shall we say advice, it would be Pascal that took exception.

      Secondly, RoC isn’t run to any national or international sporting code, so safety standards are in the hands of the organisers. If it were, for example, an MSA event, the paddock marshals would be ensuring gloves worn, helmets fastened, HANS attached, seat belts tight, doors closed, pins removed from on-board for extinguisers… everything. RoC work really hard to create the event, but pressure on TV times means some stuff is left to the drivers’ discretion.

      1. @splittimes
        “Pascal wasn’t in everyone’s good books at RoC London. If there was a procedure to uphold or official with… shall we say advice, it would be Pascal that took exception.”

        Care to explain? I can’t really wrap my head around what you’re saying. :/

    Comments are closed.