Fernando Alonso suffers concussion in Formula One testing crash

Fernando Alonso, 2-time Formula One champion, is hospitalized with a concussion after preseason testing crash

It hasn't been an easy weekend for racing drivers.

Two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso was hospitalized with a concussion Sunday after crashing during a preseason testing session in Spain.

The McLaren-Honda driver was taken to the hospital via helicopter after the right side of his car crashed into the barrier at turn three of Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. McLaren said in a statement that Alonso "was conscious and spoke with doctors" after receiving care at the circuit's medical center.

Alonso underwent a CT scan at the hospital, where he will stay overnight for observation, the team said.

“Fortunately, he’s fine, but was concussed during the accident, which therefore required an overnight stay in hospital as a precaution," said Eric Boullier, McLaren-Honda racing director. "That’s normal practice after a concussion. Inevitably, some media reports have sought to exaggerate the severity of the incident – it was just a normal testing accident."

Neither McLaren nor track officials have given a reason for the crash.

McLaren has had decent pace in preseason testing, but the team has struggled with reliability as it makes the transition to the new Honda turbo engine.

Alonso's crash comes less than 24 hours after NASCAR driver Kyle Busch suffered a compound fracture to his right leg and a broken left foot following a scary-looking collision with the inside wall during Saturday's Xfinity Series race at Daytona International Speedway.

Busch underwent surgery and remains hospitalized. He will not race in the Daytona 500 on Sunday.

Alonso, 33, rejoined McLaren this off-season after an often tumultuous stint with the team in 2007 while racing alongside then-rookie Lewis Hamilton. Alonso joined Ferrari in 2010, but couldn't win a title with the famous marquee in his five years working with the Maranello-based team.

Ferrari tweeted, "All the best Fernando" shortly after his crash.

Alonso won consecutive titles while driving for Renault in 2005 and 2006. He has 32 career Grand Prix wins.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times


11:43 a.m.: This post has been updated with McLaren-Honda saying Fernando Alonso suffered a concussion in the crash.

The original version of this post was published at 7:37 a.m.