09/12/12 Professor Sid Watkins, former Formula 1 Medical Delegate, has passed away at the age of 84. A renowned neurosurgeon, the Englishman played a vital role in increasing motorsport safety and saving numerous drivers’ lives.
Watkins began his motorsport career in the early 1960s and was offered a job by Bernie Ecclestone. He was instrumental in driver rescue and recoveries following accidents, such as the serious incidents of Didier Pironi in 1982, Martin Donnelly in 1990, Karl Wendlinger in 1994 and Mika HÃ¤kkinen in 1995. Hailing from Liverpool, Watkins was a close friend of Ayrton Senna whose life he attempted to save when the Brazilian had suffered fatal injuries at Imola in 1994.
Watkins announced his full-time retirement in January 2005 and was replaced by long-time deputy and current FIA head doctor Gary Hartstein. He received the Mario Andretti Award for Medical Excellence in 1996 and was made an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2002. He remained as President of the FIA Institute until 8 December 2011, when he elected to step down.
09/12/12 Longtime FIA and F1 track doctor Sid Watkins has passed away. More details as we get them.