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F1 2023

Sainz forces helicopter pilot to turn back en route to hospital

In a bizarre twist after crashing during the ninth stage of the Dakar rally, Carlos Sainz was airlifted away from the scene but asked the helicopter pilot to turn around.

Carlos Sainz Sr made a bizarre request while being airlifted to hospital following a crash during the ninth stage of the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia.

The father of Ferrari F1 driver Carlos Sainz Jr rolled his Audi RS 1 E-Tron buggy following an ambitious jump over a sand dune. Both Sainz and his co-driver Lucas Cruz emerged from the car and turned it back over with the help from locals.

Sainz later complained of chest pains and it was decided to transport him to a nearby hospital for examination. However, on the way to the hospital in a helicopter, he told the pilot to turn back around and fly him back to his car.

Dakar wrote on social media: "New episode in the Sainz saga on stage 9: the Spaniard asked the medical helicopter on its way to the hospital to turn back and take him to his car. He is now back with Lucas Cruz waiting for their assistance vehicle."

The turn of events mean that the Spaniard can still be classified as finishing the rally, even though his hopes of winning appear to be over.

Video of the crash can be seen below.

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