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PostSubject: Maria de Villota Test accident   Wed Jul 04, 2012 5:21 am

Maria de Villota conscious in hospital after Marussia test crash

Maria de Villota is conscious and undergoing further medical assessment at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge following her testing crash on Tuesday morning.

The Marussia Formula 1 test driver was rushed to hospital earlier in the day following an accident shortly after her first run for the team at a straightline aerodynamic test at Duxford Airfield.

According to eyewitness reports, after slowing down as she prepared to return to the temporary pit awning, de Villota's car lurched towards the rear of a team transporter, and collided with a tail-lift at the rear of the truck.

Emergency services were called immediately and, after being extracted from the car, she was transferred with what the ambulance service called "life-threatening injuries" to hospital, where she arrived in a stable condition.

Marussia issued a statement on Tuesday afternoon indicating that her life was not in danger, but saying that it was too early to assess the extent of her injuries.

"Since Maria's arrival at the hospital at approximately 10.45am this morning, she has been receiving the best medical attention possible at the hospital, which is the region's major trauma centre," said the statement.

"Maria is conscious and medical assessments are ongoing. The team will await the outcome of these assessments before providing further comment. The team's first priority at this time is Maria and her family."

The F1 community has sent its best wishes to de Villota, whose only previous experience of grand prix machinery was when she tested a 2009 Renault last year.

Fernando Alonso wrote on Twitter: "I just got home and found out [about] Maria's accident, we called the family and hopefully we will know more soon! All my energy with you!"

Jenson Button also wrote: "Terrible accident for Maria de Villota, Marussia F1 team test driver. My thoughts are with Maria and her family at this very difficult time."




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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Wed Jul 04, 2012 6:47 am

I sincerely hope that Villota fully recovers. If she was going at a slow speed, that’s arguably more dangerous than being wide open at 180 mph in the wet. At least at a 180 mph, the car is in high gear to minimise any sudden wheelspin and the downforce fully works at that speed. With how edgy these cars appear to be, it’s at low speeds at lower gears where accidents often happen.

With the extensive run off at modern circuits, I’m surprised that running an F1 car at a place without appropriate crash barriers, tarmac etc is allowed.

I still like Moto GP’s idea of testing, where teams return on Monday’s. If there is to be in-season testing, that would be a good plan of action.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Wed Jul 04, 2012 7:22 am

Seems that her head or helmet took a lot of the impact from what i have read of the accident.

Hope she is ok

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Wed Jul 04, 2012 9:37 am

What was ?

Why was a random person driving a marussia pointless in a straight line. Surely there's no value in it anyway?

Anyway I do hope she's ok, but there's no reason to let these ride buyers into a formula one car unless it's as safe as possible. Btw he brothers 95% talent free, she's slower.
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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:21 am

hopefully she recovers fully

De Villota loses right eye in crash, remains critical

that is bad, thoughts with her family and friends.
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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:25 am

Sad


The ban on testing could be to blame for this maybe,

Not sure of what went wrong, maybe the accelerator got stuck or she pressed it by mistake, many times there have been close calls with normal sized vehicles & F1 cars having accidents together as the F1 car will always go underneath the other vehicle.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 6:50 am

A witness who saw the accident said the car “suddenly accelerated” into the truck, which perhaps sounds like a stuck, wide open throttle to me. I would hate nothing more than that to happen. Adam Petty got killed by a stuck open throttle at Loudon; it’s terrible that Maria has partially lost her sight.

I was thinking along the same lines as Alan. Now that in-season testing is banned, teams are forced to go to rather questionable venue’s to conduct straight line testing, instead of doing it on fully-sanctioned FIA circuits. NASCAR banned testing at regular circuits, so teams test at venue’s where there aren’t things like SAFER barriers installed.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 7:04 am

Mobil 1 wrote:


I was thinking along the same lines as Alan. Now that in-season testing is banned, teams are forced to go to rather questionable venue’s to conduct straight line testing, instead of doing it on fully-sanctioned FIA circuits. NASCAR banned testing at regular circuits, so teams test at venue’s where there aren’t things like SAFER barriers installed.

The problem is that these airfields are sanctioned by the FIA, they still have to have certain criteria to be used.

It seems that the anti stall kicked in and she was not ready for it.

Not being funny though, why on earth would you have the truck so close to where the cars are going to be. Yes I know she was coming into the pit area (ok a marque) but still not the point and Marussia have learnt the hard way sadly for Maria

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 9:47 am

24 wrote:
Mobil 1 wrote:


I was thinking along the same lines as Alan. Now that in-season testing is banned, teams are forced to go to rather questionable venue’s to conduct straight line testing, instead of doing it on fully-sanctioned FIA circuits. NASCAR banned testing at regular circuits, so teams test at venue’s where there aren’t things like SAFER barriers installed.

The problem is that these airfields are sanctioned by the FIA, they still have to have certain criteria to be used.

It seems that the anti stall kicked in and she was not ready for it.

Not being funny though, why on earth would you have the truck so close to where the cars are going to be. Yes I know she was coming into the pit area (ok a marque) but still not the point and Marussia have learnt the hard way sadly for Maria

I know that most are sanctioned by the FIA, but it was just a airfield really & that is sort of what i was meaning to say, a proper track would of had much better safety, like there would be proper pit's.

Time & time again it had been brought up about a F1 car going under a rescue car etc on the track, the same applies everywhere else.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:09 am

Very sad incident, hope she recovers well from her injuries.

I thought straight line tests have been used to some degree even before the testing ban but that aside it sounds like it was a bit of complacency in the organisation to me but its too early to say for sure, best to wait for health and safety to go through it.

The eye witness account I heard said the car was nearing the garage area and the wheels locked and then she slided into the back of the truck. Again I'm sure a clearer picture will emerge in time.
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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:45 am

Big-AL wrote:



The ban on testing could be to blame for this maybe,

.

You've got it in one. Why they dont run on the Monday and Tuesday after every racing I don't know.
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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Jul 06, 2012 12:57 am

Big-AL wrote:
, a proper track would of had much better safety, like there would be proper pit's.


Yes indeed there are better standards at circuits, but how many circuits do you know of that have a long enough straight to do straight line testing, and also the straight line testing has to happen on a runway due to the testing ban. Add a few corners between the straights and it then does not become a straight line test Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:26 am

24 wrote:
Big-AL wrote:
, a proper track would of had much better safety, like there would be proper pit's.


Yes indeed there are better standards at circuits, but how many circuits do you know of that have a long enough straight to do straight line testing, and also the straight line testing has to happen on a runway due to the testing ban. Add a few corners between the straights and it then does not become a straight line test Wink

there's no need for stright line testing ever, it's pointless. It's just a ay to get money in nowadays.
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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:43 am

Mark, you’re absolutely right. Hence why I used the term ‘fully sanctioned’, in the sense of not having the grading that is required of GP tracks.
Basic FIA grading isn’t allowed for Grand Prix circuits, yet F1 cars are allowed to test at such venues like airfields. Some tracks that I would consider fairly safe, don’t have the highest grading from the FIA. The FIA rightly have high standards for new circuits, but that standard shouldn’t be watered down for other venues – inconsistency.

I do feel that if the teams were allowed to test after GP’s, they could do all that work on proper circuits, without the need to straight line test at precarious locations.

The details of the incident are very sketchy, but the anti-stall reason does sound odd. From observing starts, the anti-stall does seem to have a very narrow window of operation, between bogging down and cleanly starting. The biting point of the clutch seems very marginal. Whether she was practising a start, then just suddenly dumped the clutch – who knows.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:51 am

Straight-line tests are not strictly high speed, flat out sessions. Quite frequently in practice at regular testing, you’ll see drivers run a setting that gets the car’s speed and RPM level to a constant level, and that point, aero-testing takes place to test straight-line speed.

Teams can conduct straight line testing at pretty much any permanent GP circuit, or at Jerez. If they can naturally get up to about 190 mph, the relevant data and co-efficient drag numbers can be gathered.

All teams need is a long full throttle section, and that can be suitable.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Sat Jul 07, 2012 4:27 am

I wonder if the full facts will ever come out ?

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Sat Jul 07, 2012 6:27 pm

The audio was quite frightening, extremely high revs followed by bang! and then silence.

Last 20 seconds of this video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyLOmQ434Hs

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Sun Jul 08, 2012 4:53 am

Listening to that, the level of RPM sounds pretty consistent. It sounds like she was at barley idle RPM, then went into the truck. Purely based on that audio, there wasn’t any strong acceleration – because the exhaust note would have suddenly changed from that dull sound when F1 cars are at low revs.

Very peculiar. I’m glad to hear that Maria’s condition is improving.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Tue Jul 17, 2012 8:07 am

Marussia has ruled out a problem with its car as the cause of Maria de Villota's recent testing accident, after concluding its own investigation into what happened.

De Villota lost her right eye and suffered facial and head injuries in the incident at Duxford, when she crashed at slow speed in to the back of a truck as she conducted straight-line aerodynamic work.

Alongside an investigation being conducted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and another commissioned by Marussia for an independent forensic body, the team has also completed its own in-depth look at what happened.

And although the specifics of what caused the accident have not been confirmed yet, Marussia issued a statement on Monday revealing that the crash was not caused by a failure on the car.

Team principal John Booth said: "We are satisfied that the findings of our internal investigation exclude the car as a factor in the accident. We have shared and discussed our findings with the HSE for their consideration as part of their ongoing investigation.

"This has been a necessarily thorough process in order to understand the cause of the accident. We have now concluded our investigatory work and can again focus on the priority, which continues to be Maria's wellbeing. In that regard, we continue to support Maria and the De Villota family in any way we can."

De Villota is now out of sedation in hospital and able to talk to her family as she continues her recovery.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:55 am


If the car wasn’t to blame, maybe Maria just locked up. The brakes need to be within a certain operating window before having optimum retardation. I say that because she wasn’t apparently going very fast..

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:58 am

De Villota: "I'm focusing on the operations I have left"

Maria de Villota has made her first public appearance following her life-threatening testing accident back in July, during a press conference in which she revealed the full extent of her injuries, in Madrid on Thursday.

The Spaniard spent a month in hospital after crashing into an articulated trailer while carrying out a straightline test for Marussia at Duxford Aerodrome. The 32-year-old lost her right eye in the accident, as well as the senses of smell and taste and suffered significant damage to her skull. In fact, it was revealed during the press conference that the 32-year-old lost cranial mass and that she is to undergo further surgery in the future.

Doctors revealed an image of what her skull looked like after the crash [see image below]. De Villota admitted she has gained a new perspective on life, and said she was reluctant to accept she had lost her eye at first.

"One of the surgeons who have operated on me came up to me and said 'Maria, we saved your life,'" she explained. "'I don't know if you remember you had a big accident but you are here with us. It's been hard, but we are happy we saved your life. But we need to tell you you have lost your eye.'


Full interview & images here http://goo.gl/JyoTK

Very lucky to be alive looking at that image of her skull pale


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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:11 am

Perhaps is going to make the FIA consider stricter limits for straight line testing. By banning straight line testing at regular tracks, they are putting drivers lives at risks.

Maria hit a lorry that would have never been on a purpose build circuit, perhaps all potential obstructions should be banned at the very least.

Straight line testing can be done at most circuits, in my opinion. All teams need is a long straightaway to gather data and experiment.

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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Fri Oct 12, 2012 12:40 pm

There should be some testing in f1. Straight line testing for f1 cars is non sense anyway. Just give the teams some testing days again. Every Monday after the races for example.
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PostSubject: Re: Maria de Villota Test accident   Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:45 am

Oh I agree, testing is needed for F1 cars. These things are living R & D projects from race-to-race, with different parts and upgrades. The FIA is reverting to banning in-season testing, which is odd as the Mugello test should have meant that in-season testing was returning indefinitely

Testing on Monday's is the simplest solution. With how hectic the schedule is becoming, separate testing venues are just another headache, especially with the proliferation in back-to-back Grands Prix.

Straight line testing is very important, not just for testing pure straight line speed, but testing speeds with different aero levels for upcoming GP's. But straight line testing can be conducted almost anywhere, most F1 tracks have a long straightaway where this can be tested.

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