INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (August 24, 2015) - Verizon IndyCar Series driver Justin Wilson remains in a coma and in critical condition Monday morning after a crash at Pocono Raceway Sunday night.
The most recent update from IndyCar was released around 9 p.m. Sunday night and says, "Verizon IndyCar Series driver Justin Wilson sustained a severe head injury during today's event at Pocono Raceway. Wilson is currently in a coma and in critical condition while undergoing further evaluation at Lehigh Valley Health Network Cedar Crest Hospital in Allentown, Pa. INDYCAR sends its thoughts and prayers to Justin, his family and Andretti Autosport during this difficult time. Additional updates to Wilson's condition will be released when available."
Even if you don't follow the Verizon IndyCar Series on a regular basis, you've probably watched Justin Wilson race sometime over the years at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. And if you've ever seen him in person, you most likely saw a smile on his face.
And that's exactly what tweets from Wilson's IndyCar family reveal. He's widely regarded as the nicest person in the IndyCar paddock.
Oriol Servia tweeted, "Justin is by far the nicest person," and if you search #PrayersForJustin, you'll find a stream of similar messages from drivers, friends and fans.
Sage Karam was leading the race when he hit the outside wall and debris from his car went flying into the air and onto the race track. Wilson was hit in the head with a part from Karam's car. His car veered to the left and hit the inside wall. Safety workers pulled Wilson from the No. 25 Andretti Autosport Honda and he was airlifted to the hospital.
Wilson's race-winning Andretti Autosport teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay said he had been told Wilson was "unconscious and not responding."
"I’m really thinking about him," said teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay. "I can only imagine, the nose cone hitting him in the head. I knew it wasn’t good when everybody was surrounding his car.”
"He's a great friend of mine. A great friend of all of ours. He's got two daughters at home so this hits close to home."
Wilson lives in a Denver suburb with his wife and two children. His wife flew to Pennsylvania Sunday night. His brother, Stefan Wilson, also a race car driver, flew there from Indianapolis.
As usual in times like this, the racing community is coming together. Tony Stewart donated his plane to get Wilson's family by his side.
Graham Rahal tweeted, "Racing is a family. But it never ceases to amaze me at how incredible this family is in time of difficulty."
Wilson, 37, is a native of Sheffield, England.
He has 7 wins and 27 podiums since 2004 in his U.S. open-wheel career. He had been unsigned at the start of the 2015 season after most recently driving for Dale Coyne Racing. Andretti Autosport signed him to drive at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the month of May and later announced he would drive the No. 25 for the final five races of the season.