MOSCOW, October 15. /TASS/. Formula One Team Marussia declined earlier media reports that it gave orders to its pilot Jules Bianchi to speed up as the race marshals were waving double yellow flags shortly before the French racer crashed sustaining heavy injuries.
October 5 rain-affected F1 race in Japan’s Suzuka was concluded earlier by the decision of FIA officials after French pilot Bianchi, 25, from Marussia team crashed into the back of a tractor, which was clearing debris in a run-off area from a previous incident. The French pilot was seriously injured and, while unconscious, taken to a hospital in Japan.
“Marussia is shocked by such rumors,” the statement from the F1 team said. “Unfortunately we have to make a comment on such rumors. Bianchi was braking in the zone of double yellow flags. We want to reiterate that it can be proved by telemetry data, which the team had already submitted with the International Automobile Federation (FIA).”
“The recording of radio talks (between the team’s box and Bianchi) were also submitted with the FIA,” Marussia said. “Bianchi never received any order to speed up before the crash.”
Team Marussia reported in its statement on Tuesday that Jules remains in a critical but stable condition in the Intensive Care Unit of Mie General Medical Center in Yokkaichi.”
“The past nine days have been extremely difficult for Jules and his family,” the statement said. “As a consequence of the accident at Suzuka, a number of medical challenges have needed to be overcome and the situation remains challenging due to the diffuse axonal traumatic brain injury Jules has sustained.”
The event at Japan’s Suzuka and particularly Bianchi’s crash left F1 racers questioning their safety and their plans for the future of racing.
All F1 pilots said their thoughts and feelings were with the 25-year-old French racer as they were preparing for Russia’s F1 inaugural racing in the Black Sea coastal city of Sochi, held on October 10-12.
A total of some 50,000 tickets available were sold out for the Russian F1 event in Sochi with 5,000 tickets out of the mentioned-above figure purchased by foreign guests.
The Russian Grand Prix was held at the racing track located near the Olympic Village in the coastal area of Sochi. The contract to include Russia in the calendar of F1 racing for the 2014-2020 period was signed in 2010 in Sochi by then-Prime Minister of Russia Vladimir Putin and F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone.