F1 to get a new Medical Delegate


The FIA's chief doctor and rescue co-ordinator Gary Hartstein reveals, via Twitter, that his contract is not being renewed by the FIA next season.

"Have just been informed that president of the FIA and president of FIA medical commission have decided not to renew my Formula 1 contract," tweeted the American yesterday.

"Not sure about the 'why's' of the decision, but not down to me to know," he continued. "Brazil will therefore be my 247th and last Formula 1 Grand Prix. It's been a life changing experience and something I'll never forget.

"Long list of stuff in my life that's been ignored or not done coz of F1. Like vacations, learning to fly, waking up at home every weekend... time now to start banging away at that list.

"If I've brought even a small bit to this sport of what it's brought me in personal fulfilment then it was all worth it."

The New York born doctor, who specialises in anaesthesiology. first got involved in Formula One in 1989 while working near to Spa Francorchamps. The following year has was assigned to the medical car with Sid Watkins.

He continued working at the Belgian Grand Prix until 1997 when the FIA, realising the need for an anaesthetist to assist Watkins, recruited him. For the next seven years Hartstein and Watkins rode together in the medical car at the start of most races.

In January 2005, when Watkins announced that he was to retire as Formula One Medical Delegate, Hartstein was selected as his successor.

Since then, Hartstein, who is chair of the FIA Institute's Medical Training Working Group, has been key in developing some of the FIA's new approaches and policies in terms of medical safety.

Thus far, the FIA has not commented on Hartstein's claim, far less announced who his successor might be.

Pitpass wishes him well… editor Chris Balfe having once (medically) attempted to pull the wool over his head… without success.

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Published: 15/11/2012
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