Ferrari’s Felipe Massa remains in a stable condition in hospital on Sunday after fracturing his skull in two places during a freak accident in Saturday’s qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
A Ferrari statement read: “After undergoing an operation yesterday afternoon, Felipe Massa’s condition remains stable and there were no further complications through the night. “He will be given another CT scan today which will provide more precise information.” The 28-year-old was struck by a spring — which can weigh anything up to a kilogram — that had worked loose from Rubens Barrichello’s Brawn GP during the middle 15-minute period of the qualifying session. The spring was seen bouncing along the Hungaroring track before flying over the front of Massa’s Ferrari that was travelling at 170mph, striking the Brazilian on the helmet just over his left eye. Massa appeared to be knocked unconscious, with his right foot jamming down on the throttle as he drove straight into a tire barrier.
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Stricken in the car, photographs emerged showing a fist-sized dent in his helmet, and with the visor up, there was a large cut over a blackened left eye. Massa was initially treated at the circuit’s medical center before being taken by helicopter to Budapest’s AEK military hospital where he underwent emergency surgery. A Ferrari official later described the operation as a “success”. It is now hoped the brain scan will confirm Massa is en route to recovery.