Carlos Sainz suffers heavy crash in Russian Grand Prix practice

By Andrew BensonChief F1 writer
Sainz suffers heavy crash in Sochi
Russian Grand Prix on the BBC
Venue: Sochi Dates: 9-11 October
Coverage: Live coverage on BBC TV and BBC Radio 5 live, online, mobile, the BBC Sport app and Connected TV. Full details here

Toro Rosso driver Carlos Sainz has been airlifted to hospital after suffering a heavy crash during final practice at the Russian Grand Prix.

He gave a thumbs up to TV cameras as he was put in an ambulance on a stretcher after being extricated from the car.

Sainz's car was buried deep into the barriers after he lost control at Turn 13 at the end of a long straight.

He lost control during braking, skidded down a wall and into the impact-absorbing barrier in the run-off area.

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost said: "He is conscious and with the doctors. We don't know what his conditions are but so far it seems he is OK.

Carlos Sainz
Sainz gave a thumbs up as he was stretchered into a medical vehicle

"It seems the car got lost under braking and we must find out why."

He said it was "difficult to say" whether it was a car failure "but at the moment it looks like no".

He said it was unlikely Sainz, 21, would be able to take part in qualifying.

BBC F1 co-commentator David Coulthard said there were two major areas of concerns - how the car had gone under the barriers and the length of time it took for medical crews to get to the scene of the accident and remove Sainz from under the barriers.

Carlos Sainz
Sainz's best result so far came at the Malaysian Grand Prix where he finished eighth

Sainz, the son of two-time world rally champion of the same name, is in his debut season in F1.

He and team-mate and fellow rookie Max Verstappen have both impressed observers with their speed and maturity despite their youth and limited experience.

Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg ended the truncated session fastest, 0.726 seconds quicker than Williams's Valtteri Bottas, with the second Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton third.

The session was stopped after a little more than half distance and in concert with the restricted running on Friday means drivers and teams will go into qualifying at 13:00 BST with very limited information about their cars' performance on the Sochi track.

Full practice results

Russian Grand Prix coverage details

Top Stories