IRL: Salazar recovering from surgery

IRL: Salazar recovering from surgery

INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, April 18, 2002 -- Indy Racing League driver Eliseo Salazar is in satisfactory condition in the critical care unit at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis after he underwent successful emergency surgery April 16 to repair a...

INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, April 18, 2002 -- Indy Racing League driver Eliseo Salazar is in satisfactory condition in the critical care unit at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis after he underwent successful emergency surgery April 16 to repair a torn vertebral artery in his chest.

"Cari and I would like to thank everyone who has called and left messages of concern," said Salazar. "I am looking forward to going home to Miami so I can focus on getting well."

Eliseo Salazar.
Photo by indyracing.com photo by Ron McQueeney.

Dr. Henry Bock, medical services director of the Indy Racing League, said the physicians are "pleased" with Salazar's progress. Dr. John Fehernbacher, a vascular surgeon, performed the operation.

Bock said the normal recovery time for this type of operation lasts longer than the remainder of the 2002 Indy Racing League season, which ends Sunday, Sept. 15.

A.J. Foyt Racing has not made an announcement about a replacement driver.


The torn vertebral artery was a result of a testing accident April 16 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The accident occurred at approximately 4:30 p.m. (EST) April 16 during private testing for the 86th Indianapolis 500. Salazar, who drives for A.J. Foyt Racing, made contact with the outside retaining wall in Turn 1. He was driving teammate Airton Dare's No. 14 Harrah's/A.J. Foyt Racing Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone.

More updates will follow as details become available.

Cards and letters may be sent to Eliseo Salazar at: Indy Racing League Attention: Eliseo Salazar 4565 W. 16th Street Indianapolis, IN 46222

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Eliseo Salazar , Airton Daré , A.J. Foyt