Vitaly Petrov released from hospital after Monaco crash

Renault driver Vitaly Petrov has been released from hospital after a crash near the end of an incident-packed Monaco Grand Prix.

The 26-year-old Russian crashed into a barrier coming out of the first swimming pool chicane on lap 69.

The incident led to a red flag and the race being stopped for 21 minutes as medics treated him.

"I'm fine. It's been a big crash but I'm OK," said Petrov after leaving the Princess Grace hospital.

"I would like to thank all my fans for all their well wishes, the medical teams at the circuit, the hospital for their efficient and friendly assistance, and the team for their concern.

"It was quite a big impact and I could not feel my legs very well after the crash.

"I thought it was best for the medical team to assist with removing me from the car as it was difficult for me to move and my legs were trapped in the cockpit. I did not lose consciousness but I was in quite a lot of pain when I was inside the car."

And Petrov insists he will be ready for the next race in Canada on 12 June.

"It is a shame, as we could have got quite a few points this weekend," he added.

"I'm now looking forward to Montreal. We need to sort out our problems in qualifying and we will get some good results, as our race pace is usually very good."

Petrov was in a group of backmarkers that were caught by the leading trio of Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and McLaren's Jenson Button as the race was building to a grandstand finish.

Force India's Adrian Sutil was at the front of the backmarkers but he was limping around with a puncture after brushing the barriers coming out of Tabac.

Hamilton was forced to brake at the start of the Swimming Pool complex to try to avoid Sutil but that led to the next car, the Toro Rosso of Jaime Alguersuari, running into the back of the McLaren.

In the ensuing chaos, the following car of Petrov seemed to connect with Alguersuari and he went straight into the barriers, resulting in the red flag as an ambulance was sent to treat him.

Renault's statement read: "Vitaly complained about his left ankle to the medical crew, so doctors drove him to the Princess Grace hospital for further checks. No fracture had been diagnosed at the circuit.

"Once at hospital, it was confirmed that there was no swelling or broken bone."

When the race resumed, Vettel claimed his fifth victory of the season to extend his lead in the drivers' championship.

Petrov's incident came a day after Sauber's Sergio Perez was admitted to hospital after a heavy crash at the end of Saturday qualifying.

The 21-year-old suffered concussion in the accident and will be kept in hospital for at least another day.

And the race itself had numerous incidents, with a safety car also being deployed on lap 34 when Ferrari's Felipe Massa crashed in the tunnel and Mercedes driver Michael Schumacher stopped near the entry to the pit lane.

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