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Night watchman // Carlos Sainz Jr unhurt after huge Sochi smash

Published by Christine Blachford

Carlos Sainz Jr unhurt after huge Sochi smash
Dan Istitene/Getty Images

Carlos Sainz Jr suffered a huge crash in final practice for the Russian Grand Prix on Saturday, but the Spaniard escaped with no injuries and only needs a simply overnight stay in hospital for observation. The incident looked far more serious at first, with the Toro Rosso car buried underneath the Armco, the driver strapped to a stretcher before being airlifted to hospital for checks.

Sainz gave spectators the thumbs up as he was lifted into the back of the waiting ambulance, and has since posted pictures and videos to social media from his hospital bed. "All ok! Nothing to worry about!" he tweeted. "Already thinking how to convince the doctors to be on the grid for tomorrow!" An official statement from the team clarified what attention their driver had received: "After arriving at the Sochi Hospital 4, Carlos Sainz, who never lost consciousness, underwent a medical examination, including a full body scan. The scan showed that the driver has no injuries."

The FIA Doctor will need to give Sainz the all-clear to take to the grid for Sunday's race, but the stewards have already given their dispensation for the Spaniard to join the fun despite not taking part in qualifying. Toro Rosso teammate Max Verstappen qualified in 9th place for the Russian race, with the team showing good pace at the Sochi circuit.