Indianapolis, IN (September 22, 2011)- Over a month ago,
Justin Wilson, pilot of the No. 22 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
entry, was involved in a single-car incident in practice for the
Honda Indy 200. During the Saturday morning session in Mid-Ohio,
Wilson ran off on the exit of Turn 1. As a result, he dropped two
wheels off the asphalt and then went hopping through the grass,
which then sent the car airborne.
Wilson sustained an anterior compression fracture of the fifth
vertebra, which has kept him out of the car for the remainder of
Nearly six weeks after the incident, Wilson is on the fast track
to recovery and is back into training. "If I think back to how I
felt immediately afterwards, and compare that with what I can do
now, it's been great progress. It started to get less painful after
the first two weeks and a couple of weeks ago I was able to raise
my arms above my head for the first time. Now I'm in the swimming
pool every day and doing some upper body exercises, so things are
starting to feel normal again," commented Wilson.
During the 12-week recovery process, Wilson has had to be
treated by bracing. Even though the back brace provided by Dr.
Terry Trammell at OrthoIndy has been pretty uncomfortable, it was
key to Justin's recovery. "Now I know what a turtle feels like! But
it's been worth the discomfort knowing that I'm going about the
recovery the right way," continued Wilson.
While Wilson might be fit enough to get in the car for the final
race in Las Vegas on October 16th, he doesn't want to take any
chances. "I might be fit enough to drive at Vegas, but for the sake
of one race, when I'm not in contention for anything in the
championship, it just doesn't make sense. Jumping in the car after
11 and a bit weeks isn't the right way to see if my back is 100%
healed or not," stated Wilson.
Sitting on the sidelines has been hard, but getting back to
training is making each day go faster. "It's obviously been
frustrating not being able to drive the No. 22 car. I felt we'd
turned the corner on a disappointing start to the season and had
genuine hopes of being up near the front in the second half of the
year. But it won't be long now until pre-season testing starts and
I can focus on 2012."
Stayed tuned for an announcement on Wilson's replacement for the
final two races of the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series season.