Injured French auto racer making quick progress

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Bourdais was hurt when he crashed on the third lap of a qualifying attempt for Sunday’s 101st Indy 500.

French IndyCar racer Sebastien Bourdais, injured in a crash last Saturday while driving the fastest qualifying laps at the Indianapolis 500, is making “amazingly fast” progress, his doctor said Thursday.

Bourdais was hurt when he crashed on the third lap of a qualifying attempt for Sunday’s 101st Indy 500. He suffered a fractured right hip and multiple pelvic fractures that will sideline him for the remainder of the 2017 IndyCar campaign.

The four-time season series champion underwent surgery Saturday and was discharged from Methodist Hospital into a rehabilitation facility on Wednesday.

“Sebastien is progressing amazingly fast for having pelvis and hip fractures and considering the severity of the crash,” said orthopedic surgeon Kevin Scheid, an IndyCar medical consultant.

“He’s walking with crutches, in good spirits and feeling good. We expect the fractures to heal in around eight weeks and he should be able to start putting weight on the right leg then. Until that time, he can work on rehabilitating his upper body, core strength and range of motion in the hip.”

Bourdais, 38, was excited about his recovery but realizes there is plenty of rehabilitation work ahead before he can realize his goal of returning to racing.

“I’m obviously really happy to be up on my feet and feeling pretty good about being able to walk on crutches,” Bourdais said.

“It’s going to be a bit of a long road ahead. I still have six weeks before I can put weight on my right leg and put my foot on the ground, but after that it should be pretty smooth sailing.

“I’m really looking forward to the day I can get back in the car and hopefully that will be before the end of the season. I look forward to seeing you guys at the track.”

Dale Coyne, owner of Bourdais’ car, said Sunday that Bourdais would be sidelined for the rest of the IndyCar season. He hired Australian James Davison to drive what would have been the Frenchman’s ride in Sunday’s race.

The final IndyCar race of the season is the Grand Prix of Sonoma on September 17, which would be less than four months after the crash and less than two months after he can start using his right leg again.