CHAMPCAR/CART: Gold Coast Christian Fittipaldi - Painful Memories

Painful Memories Christian Fittipaldi Gold Coast, AUS (September 13, 1998) -- This week's return to Surfers Paradise means more to Christian Fittipaldi (Kmart Swift Ford) than it might to other FedEx Championship Series drivers. It was at last...

Painful Memories Christian Fittipaldi

Gold Coast, AUS (September 13, 1998) -- This week's return to Surfers Paradise means more to Christian Fittipaldi (Kmart Swift Ford) than it might to other FedEx Championship Series drivers. It was at last year's event in Australia that Fittipaldi sustained a broken right leg on the second lap, following contact between himself, Gil de Ferran (Valvoline/Cummins Special Reynard Honda) and Michel Jourdain Jr. (Herdez/Viva Mexico! Reynard Ford).

Fittipaldi missed seven events as a result of the accident, and still carries a rod and two screws, which will be removed following the season, in the leg. "I remember everything," Fittipaldi said. "After I was hit from behind, I hit the wall in front of the pits. The second hit was absolutely unbelievable. I went in head on. I couldn't feel anything in my right leg, so I was very worried. I knew I would be hurt, but I was very lucky that it wasn't worse. The safety crews did a great job getting me out of the car as quick as possible. The fact that I wasn't hurt more is a testament to the safety of these cars."

Fittipaldi sees the upcoming Honda Indy as an opportunity to bring some closure to the events of last year. "It will be good to finally put all of this behind me," he said. "Since the accident, I was able to make a strong return, until one thing after another happened and the bad luck started. I hope that the race in Australia will turn things around. It doesn't matter where I win my first race, but I guess it would be nice if it was Australia. Once I get on track on Friday, I will put the accident out of my mind and concentrate on doing my job the best way possible. I always try to look forward and not back. For sure, I was very lucky and overall, the experience made me appreciate everything even more."

Source: CART Online

-------------------------- Internet Access Australia-------------------------- --- IAA is MNI's ISP of choice at the '98 Gold Coast Indy --- ---- Melbourne -- Tel. 03 9686 6677 -- Fax 03 9686 6644 ----- ------------------ http://www.iaccess.com.au ---------------------

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Gil de Ferran , Christian Fittipaldi , Michel Jourdain