The 32-year-old Spaniard was test driving an MR-01 car, the first time she was behind the wheel of the vehicle, in preparation for this week’s British Grand Prix. She was at the end of a straight-line test run at Duxford Airfield, north of London, when the car reportedly suddenly accelerated and crashed into the back of a transport truck. She was rushed to the hospital and treated for “severe head and facial injuries.”
“We are grateful for the medical attention that Maria has been receiving and her family would like to thank the Neurological and Plastics surgical teams,” Marussia team principal John Booth said on Wednesday, according to CNN. “However, it is with great sadness that I must report that, due to the injuries she sustained, Maria has lost her right eye.”
She remains in “critical but stable condition,” according to Marussia, which signed de Villota as a test driver in March. The team has already launched an investigation into what led to the accident. De Villota, daughter of former F1 driver Emilio de Villota, is one of only two female drivers under contract by an F1 team.
Photo: Andreas Pranter/GEPA via US PRESSWIRE