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Massa out of danger, but his future in racing is in doubt

©

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-07-28

Felipe Massa, who successfully underwent surgery after a serious accident during qualifying sessions at the Hungarian Grand Prix, is out of immediate danger but has suffered an injury to his left eye. It is too early to know if he can race again.

REUTERS - Injured Formula One driver Felipe Massa is out of imminent life-threatening danger but is being kept under sedation to protect his brain after his accident, doctors said on Monday.

"We can say that the immediate life-threatening condition has been averted but a complication could make it life-threatening again," Robert Veres, the doctor who performed surgery on Massa, told a news conference.

"Currently he is in a severe but not critical condition and he is stable," Veres added.

Veres also confirmed that Massa had suffered an eye injury.

"I'm sure yes, but we don't know the quality of the damage (to his eye)," he told reporters when asked whether Massa's left eye had been damaged.

Brazilian Massa fractured his skull in an accident during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix on Saturday when he was hit just above his left eye by a bouncing spring, weighing almost a kilo, that broke free from compatriot Rubens Barrichello's Brawn car.

Veres said Massa, last year's championship runner-up, had signs of brain swelling. He said the driver was likely to miss the rest of the season.

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo, who flew to Budapest on Monday to visit Massa, said his main concern for the time being was Massa's recovery and the team would consider his possible replacement later.

"For us, the first priority is to find out Felipe's recovery progress and situation," di Montezemolo told a joint news conference with Massa's doctors. "Felipe is a very important member of the Ferrari family not just the Ferrari team.

"First priority now is to find out the situation with Felipe and then we will see and we will think, without pressure. Only at that moment will we make a decision and if we have to take a decision we will make a good decision," di Montezemolo said.

Date created : 2009-07-27

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