Why Newey 'fled' Croatian hospital after very serious cycling accident
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Why Newey 'fled' Croatian hospital after very serious cycling accident

25 June - 12:05 Last update: 17:39

Adrian Newey was seriously injured after a cycling accident on holiday last year. The top Red Bull Racing designer suffered multiple skull fractures and broke a bone above his eye muscle. In an interview with The Evening Standard Newey talks about his visit to the Croatian hospital.

Hospital visit Newey

"The three wise men appeared at the bottom of my bed — a neurosurgeon, a maxillofacial guy and the anaesthetist. With the eye, he said they’d need to act quickly or the bone could sever the eye muscle and I’d lose movement of the eye." Newey says.

An operation was necessary, but the 63-year-old Briton refused. He asked how much risk there was of permanent damage to the eye. He was told there was no risk of the operation happening. When Newey asked if there was a chance of brain damage, things changed completely. The doctors said there was a five to ten per cent chance of that.

"At which point I told my wife to get me out of there," Newey continued. In the days before, he had been with Ecclestone in Croatia and the former Formula One owner quickly arranged for a neurosurgeon in London. Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner in turn arranged for Newey to return to Britain as soon as possible on a private plane.

Newey still works as much as ever

Newey missed a number of Grands Prix last season but, miraculously, from the Turkish Grand Prix onwards, he was back in full swing with the team. His recovery has been amazingly fast. Nor has the accident made him think about stepping back: "No, I’m sufficiently pig-headed that it didn’t change much."

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