|By Jonathan Noble via AUTOSPORT||Tuesday, July 3rd 2012, 14:27 GMT|
Maria de Villota is conscious and undergoing further medical assessment at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge following her testing crash on Tuesday morning.
The Marussia Formula 1 test driver was rushed to hospital earlier in the day following an accident shortly after her first run for the team at a straightline aerodynamic test at Duxford Airfield.
According to eyewitness reports, after slowing down as she prepared to return to the temporary pit awning, de Villota's car lurched towards the rear of a team transporter, and collided with a tail-lift at the rear of the truck.
Emergency services were called immediately and, after being extracted from the car, she was transferred with what the ambulance service called “life-threatening injuries” to hospital, where she arrived in a stable condition.
Marussia issued a statement on Tuesday afternoon indicating that her life was not in danger, but saying that it was too early to assess the extent of her injuries.
“Since Maria's arrival at the hospital at approximately 10.45am this morning, she has been receiving the best medical attention possible at the hospital, which is the region's major trauma centre,” said the statement.
“Maria is conscious and medical assessments are ongoing. The team will await the outcome of these assessments before providing further comment. The team's first priority at this time is Maria and her family.”
The F1 community has sent its best wishes to de Villota, whose only previous experience of grand prix machinery was when she tested a 2009 Renault last year.
Fernando Alonso wrote on Twitter: “I just got home and found out [about] Maria's accident, we called the family and hopefully we will know more soon! All my energy with you!”
Jenson Button also wrote: “Terrible accident for Maria de Villota, Marussia F1 team test driver. My thoughts are with Maria and her family at this very difficult time.”