Anthoine Hubert’s deadly crash at Spa in a 2019 Formula 2 race was the first fatal accident at an F1 event since 2014 and also left Juan Manuel Correa with severe injuries. Though Correa said this week he’s now ready to come back and race.
Correa still had several surgeries to contend with a full year after the accident, though he said last year that he planned to come back. Correa will return with ART Grand Prix and race in Formula 3 next season, which was also Hubert’s team when he drove Formula 3.
“I would also like to take this moment to honor the memory of Anthoine, as I will keep him very close to my heart every time I step inside the car,” Correa said today in an Instagram post.
More from The Guardian:
“Announcing my return to the race tracks is one of the proudest moments in my professional career,” Correa said in a statement, promising to honour Hubert’s memory when he began racing again for the ART Formula Three team. “My dream is still to reach F1 and this is the first step in my comeback.”
Correa’s car hit Hubert’s sitting car at 135 mph in the fatal accident, investigators later determined. He opted not to amputate his right leg and instead opted for a full reconstruction of it, which guaranteed months and months of extensive treatment, including 25 surgeries, according to ESPN.
One of the scarier things I’ve ever heard a racer say, from Correa’s interview with ESPN last year:
“The thing that really scared me in that moment was that, usually with the amount of adrenaline we have, you don’t feel pain at all. I’ve had crashes before where I’ve walked out and then three hours later I couldn’t get out of my bed from the pain, but in the moment I didn’t feel anything.
“What scared me was that immediately the pain, the shooting pain I felt on my legs... I knew something was seriously wrong. Initially I was convinced I had lost my legs right then and there. I had massive pain but I couldn’t move them, because they were hanging on from the skin.”
Good luck out there, Juan, and stay safe.