SPORT

Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona: Memo Gidley Breaks Back In Terrifying Accident (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

27/01/2014 12:34 GMT | Updated 27/01/2014 12:59 GMT

US driver Memo Gidley remains in hospital following a huge crash at the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona race that broke his back.

The GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing team driver was severely injured when he ploughed into the back of the Ferrari driven by Matteo Malucelli in the early stages of the twice-round-the-clock race in the USA.

memo gidley

The remains of Memo Gidley's car after the huge crash at Daytona

Gidley's Corvette and the Ferrari were racing towards an infield part of the track and facing directly into the sun as the three-hour mark neared. Malucelli was pulling to the side of the track after radioing to his team that he had lost power.

Gidley, who had started the race in pole position for the first race of the inaugural United SportsCar Championship season, was attempting to lap a slower car but did not see Malucelli when he pulled out to pass. As the video above shows, the impact was huge.

Both drivers were taken to hospital where Gidley, who had to be cut out of his car, underwent surgery on his back as well as his left arm and leg, Sporting News reported.

Malucelli was reported to have suffered a 'severe cerebral concussion' but he was released from the Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach on Sunday afternoon.

The race was stopped for 90 minutes whilst the drivers were attended to and the debris cleared. The prestigious event was won by another Corvette, the Action Express Racing car driven by Joao Barbosa, Christian Fittipaldi and Sebastien Bourdais who came out on top after a three-way Chevrolet-powered fight.