In Brief

Alonso 'blacked out before Barcelona crash'

Reports suggest Alonso thought he was 13-year-old go-karter when he woke up in hospital

Fears are increasing that Fernando Alonso's Formula One career may be in jeopardy as more details emerge about his accident.

Earlier in the week the 33-year-old McLaren driver withdrew from the opening Grand Prix of the season on the advice of doctors after he crashed during testing on February 22. He had been told he risked a second concussion if he raced in Melbourne on Sunday week.

But according to the Daily Mirror, "doctors and crash investigators have not excluded the possibility the double champion may have blacked out before" his 133mph crash on the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

The paper contradicts the McLaren claim that the crash was caused by a "gust of wind" and says that Alonso's car "simply just drove off the track".

There has been no official comment from the Spaniard's management team, and nor has McLaren elaborated on Alonso's medical condition other than to say that he hopes to compete in the second Grand Prix in Malaysia at the end of the month.

The Times also questions Alonso's future, with the paper saying speculation over his wellbeing "refuses to die down" following a report in El Pais newspaper. It claims that Alonso "woke up in hospital after his testing crash thinking he was a 13-year-old star of karting"

The Times says that the El Pais newspaper is "known to be close to Alonso's management", and its sources have a reputation for being impeccable. According to the report when he regained consciousness Alonso believed he was a teenage racer in 1995. Asked who he was, Alonso allegedly replied: "I'm Fernando, I drive go karts and I want to be a Formula One driver."

Alonso apparently had no recollection of making his Formula One debut with the Minardi team in 2001, nor of winning back-to-back world championships in 2005 and 2006.

The BBC says that Alonso intends to race in Malaysia on March 29 but will have to first undergo tests by the FIA's medical team, which will include a full neurological assessment to assess his recovery from the concussion he sustained last month.

If these tests reveal any areas of concern, says the BBC, the FIA has "the right to ask further questions, including to demand the driver's full medical records".

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