Anthony Davidson's first Le Mans 24 Hours ended prematurely when he suffered a big accident at the Mulsanne corner during the darkness hours of the endurance classic.

Just ten minutes after taking the wheel of the #80 Veloqx Prodrive Ferrari 550 Maranello from Darren Turner, the 24-year old made heavy contact with the barriers at the end of the circuit's landmark straight. Although he was able to extract himself from the car, and was attended by incident marshals who arrived to tend to him, the BAR F1 test driver was seen sitting by the side of the car for some time before being taken to the official medical centre, where he was given a full examination by the circuit's doctors.

The official diagnosis is that Davidson is shocked and bruised and has suffered a bang to the head, but is conscious and talkative. He is being taken to Le Mans' central hospital for a brain scan - a routine procedure where head injuries are involved.

The cause of the accident is not yet known, and is currently being investigated by the team's engineers. Further information will be released by the team as soon as it is known, but the #80 car, which was holding second place in the GTS category at the time of the shunt, will take no further part in the race and has been officially retired.

The sister #88 car of Jamie Davies, Tomas Enge and Peter Kox continues to hold the lead in the GTS category, and has run smoothly through the night.

 

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