Dario Franchitti IndyCar Retirement on Medical Ground Draws F1 Stars Reaction

Dario Franchitti has retired from motor racing following medical advice. The 40-year-old four-time IndyCar champion and three-time Indy 500 winner has cut short a successful career in American motorsport following his horrific crash in Houston that also injured 13 spectators. Spinal injuries caused by the accident have been cited as the reason for the Scot’s retirement.

“Based upon the expert advice of the doctors, it is their best medical opinion that I must stop racing,” Franchitti said in a statement. “They have made it very clear that the risks involved in further racing are too great and could be detrimental to my long-term well-being. Based on this medical advice, I have no choice but to stop.”

British F1 drivers have reacted with genuine affection to the news that Britain’s most successful driver in American open-wheel racing history is hanging up his helmet after 31 wins from 265 races.

During the build up to Sunday’s United States Grand Prix, Jenson Button said, “Dario was one of the drivers I always looked up to as a youngster… He's a proper legend of the sport. He's achieved so much but he also carries himself so well. He's such a nice person, a lovely guy.”

Tributes followed from other British F1 stars. Mercedes’s Lewis Hamilton said, “What he's achieved in the sport has been great. It's a real shame because he still had some way to go in the sport, so I'm really sad to hear he's had to retire.”

Scottish Formula One driver, Paul di Resta summed up Franchitti’s achievements. “I think that in Europe he is probably under-appreciated. To sit there at 40, having won four titles and three Indy500s. I would like to be in that position.”

The former Target Chip Ganassi driver, who was due to begin his 16th season in IndyCar racing in 2014, hasn’t made his plans for the future known as yet but we hope that he stays around the IndyCar paddock in some capacity.

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