Justin Wilson passes away after being struck on the head in an accident
Great Britain IndyCar driver Justin Wilson passed away on Monday after suffering from a serious head injury during a wreck at the final laps of a race on Sunday at the Pocono Raceway in Pennsylvania, NDTV reports
The incident occurred when Wilson’s car careened out of control and into a wall after he was struck by a massive debris from the car of Sage Karam.
The Chief Executive Officer of Indy Car released a statement, saying Wilson’s loss was a huge loss to the motorsports community.
“This is a monumentally sad day for IndyCar and the motorsports community as a whole," the chief executive officer of Hulman & Co. which is the parent of Indy Car and Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Mark Miles said in a statement released.
Justin's elite ability to drive a race car was matched by his unwavering kindness, character and humility -- which is what made him one of the most respected members of the paddock," he added.
The 37-year-old Wilson was a seven-time IndyCar winner and had raced in Formula One in 2003 with Minardi. Prior to joining IndyCar in 2008, Wilson was also part of the Champ Car World Series for a period of three years between 2004 and 2007. In 54 starts during that period, Wilson won 4 races and also was on pole position on 6 occasions.
During his seven-year IndyCar career, he represented 4 teams - Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing, Dreyer and Reinbold Racing, Dale Coyne Racing and finally the Andretti Autosport in 2015.
He had in total 120 starts, off which he won 3 races, finished on pole twice and recorded fastest laps on two occasions. Apart from being a professional racer, Wilson was also thorough family man, who is survived by his wife and two daughters.
Karem took to twitter to express his sadness over the demise.
Valuable asset to the team: Andretti Autosport
The family in a statement said that Wilson was “loving father and devoted husband, as well as a highly competitive racing driver who was respected by his peers".
Andretti Autosport also released a statement, saying that Wilson was a valuable asset to the team and they were grieved over his passing away.
“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Justin Wilson. He was a tremendous racer, a valuable member of the team and respected representative to our sport,” they said in a statement.
"He was a tremendous racer, a valuable member of the team and respected representative to our sport,” the statement added.
Wilson is the first driver to have passed away following a race accident since fellow countrymen Dan Wheldon, who was killed in a fiery crash Las Vegas in October 2011.