Massa thanks hospital

BUDAPEST - Brazilian Formula 1 driver Felipe Massa has expressed his gratitude to Budapest's AEK hospital, which treated him after a horror accident at the Hungarian Grand Prix last month.

BUDAPEST - Brazilian Formula 1 driver Felipe Massa has expressed his gratitude to Budapest's AEK hospital, which treated him after a horror accident at the Hungarian Grand Prix last month.

Massa suffered severe head injuries when he was struck by a spring that flew off compatriot Rubens Barrichello's Brawn car during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix on July 25. He underwent surgery on his fractured skull.

"I am convinced that the speed and the quality of the treatment I received at the AEK hospital was fundamental to reducing the duration of my convalescence," the 28-year-old pilot, now recovering in Brazil, wrote in an email read out at a ceremony in Budapest.

A Brazilian state secretary from the sports ministry, Ricardo Leyser Goncalves, also thanked Hungary for the "attentive and professional" care that Massa had received in Budapest.

"Thanks to the professional excellence and the kindness (of the staff), this story has had a good ending," Goncalves said at the event, noting the shock felt in Brazil after the fatal accident of Formula 1 pilot Ayrton Senna in 1994.

Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone also expressed his gratitude for the "super hospital" in an email. - Sapa-AFP

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