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Ferrari mechanic has surgery, thanks well-wishers

Ferrrari mechanic Francesco Cigarini receives medical assistant following an accident during the pit stop of Kimi Raikkonen during the Bahrain Grand Prix at the Sakhir circuit in Manama on Sunday. AFP
Ferrrari mechanic Francesco Cigarini receives medical assistant following an accident during the pit stop of Kimi Raikkonen during the Bahrain Grand Prix at the Sakhir circuit in Manama on Sunday. AFP

Ferrari mechanic has surgery, thanks well-wishers

Ferrari mechanic Francesco Cigarini has undergone a successful operation on his leg broken when Kimi Raikkonen ran over him in the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Cigarini suffered a broken tibia and fibula in his left leg in a botched second pit-stop in Sunday’s race.

Ferrari were fined €50,000 for the incident. It was the second time the team had been involved in an unsafe release from a pit stop during the weekend.

Cigarini was preparing to fit a new left-rear tyre during Raikkonen’s second stop when the Finn was wrongly signalled to pull out and rejoin the race.

He was transferred from the circuit medical centre to Bahrain’s BDF Hospital for surgery.

“The operation went well,” he wrote on Instagram. “I want to thank all the people who asked about me and worried. Only a big thank-you. Hugs.”

Raikkonen, who was criticised on social media for his lack of emotional response at the time, wrote back: “Get well soon mate!”

Ferrari launched an immediate investigation to discover how their automated system had failed.

The system turned on a green light to signal that all four wheels had refitted tyres, but the left-rear tyre was stuck and had not been removed.

Raikkonen was stopped immediately in the pit lane because it is against the regulations to run a car with a mismatched set of tyres.

In a stewards’ statement the International Motoring Federation (FIA) said: “The stewards determined that the car was released unsafely in breach of Art. 28.13 (a). The team released the car in a manner endangering team personnel and causing injury.”

Raikkonen’s Ferrari teammate, four-time champion German Sebastian Vettel, won the race, his second victory in two events this season.

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