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A large accident for Carlos Sainz has brought an early end to proceedings in third free practice for the Russian Grand Prix, but reports suggest he has escaped without serious injury.

The rookie suffered an off coming into turn 13 - which is preceded by one of the fastest points on the circuit -, with his Toro Rosso coming to rest deep into the softer Tec-Pro barriers nose-first.

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Though it remains unclear what ultimately caused Sainz to go off, replays shown him losing the rear coming into the braking zone of the turn 13 90-degree right-hander, striking the near-side barrier, before spearing straight on without appearing to scrub much of the speed off.

Occurring with 25mins of the session remaining, cranes were needed to lift the barriers and allow medical teams to tend to him.

Sainz was eventually seen to be stretchered into ambulance after more than 20mins, giving a thumbs up.

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost has seen confirmed Sainz is conscious and with medical staff, whilst suggesting the accident was caused by driver error.