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Brundle suffered heart attack in Monaco

NEWS STORY
13/01/2017

Driver turned commentator Martin Brundle has revealed that he suffered a heart attack following Monaco GP broadcast.

Speaking in Birmingham, the 57-year-old, who contested 158 Grands Prix with Tyrrell, Zakspeed, Williams, Brabham, Benetton, Ligier, McLaren and Jordan, before joining ITV as a commentator in 1997, revealed that he suffered the heart attack as he ran to the podium in Monaco to interview the top three finishers.

"I ended up with a 23mm stent in my left anterior descending," he told an audience in Birmingham, revealing that he was forced to miss the subsequent race (Canada) as he recovered from the surgery.

Though he is long retired from F1 the Briton has never hung up his helmet, having tested F1 tyres for Pirelli, driven in Formula Palmer Audi and made numerous appearances in Sports Cars, contesting the Le Mans 24 Hours as recently as 2012 with son Alex (pictured).

Indeed, with an outing planned in the Road to Le Mans LMP3 support race to the 24 Hours weeks after the heart attack, the Briton feared his dream was over.

"I didn't think I could do the race," he said. "But the cardio guy said to me, 'Yeah, you can do the race. Just don't forget your blood thinners.'

"So I rang Zak and Richard," he continued, referring to United Autosports team bosses Zak Brown and Richard Dean, "then did 75 laps at Palmer Sports in a car. I had bruises coming out of my chest, but I love Le Mans and thought 'I'm not going to miss this'."

"I sat in the press conference and there was a 17-year-old and a 19-year-old sitting there alongside me," said the Briton, who put the car on pole, "and I thought 'that's not bad for an old geezer of 57'.

“We finished second in the race, which was unfortunate, but to drive a prototype car out of the pitlane at Le Mans is extraordinary, you get a bit sweaty, get a bit scared.

"I miss that feeling so much," he admitted. "I'll do it again this year if I get half a chance.

I'm a bit like Rubens Barrichello, I just can't wait to get back in a car. I'm hard-wired in that respect. I'm a racing driver who does television, I don't see myself as a television person."

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