Formula 1 driver Fernando Alonso has been hospitalised after an incident while riding his bike.
The Spaniard, a former two-time F1 world champion, was injured after the incident as he was cycling near his home in Lugano, Switzerland.
Reports suggest that Alonso, 39, was hit by a car and that he may have suffered a jaw fracture in the incident.
Alonso was believed to have been taken to Bern to undergo specialist treatment for his injuries.
A statement from his racing team, Alpine F1, posted on Twitter on Thursday (February 11) said: “Alpine F1 Team can confirmed that Fernando Alonso has been involved in a road accident while cycling in Switzerland.
“Fernando is conscious and well in himself and is awaiting for examinations tomorrow morning [Friday].
“Alpine F1 Team will not make any further statement at this point in time. Further updates will be given tomorrow.”
For F1 fans, the incident raises questions about whether Alonso will be fit to take part in pre-season testing in Bahrain from March 12-14, before the first race on March 26-28.
Alonso, winner of 32 Grands Prix and world champion in 2005 and 2006, has been out of F1 since 2018 when he left McLaren, but he has now re-joined the fold with Alpine, formerly Renault F1.
Previously Alonso has attempted to delve into the world of professional cycling, as he tried to set up a WorldTour team in 2015.
After visiting the 2014 Giro d’Italia and reportedly securing a €100m sponsorship agreement for five years from the UAE, the October deadline for registering a team with the UCI passed by quietly.
When project failed to materialise, Alonso apologised to two-time world champion Paolo Bettini, who had quit his job as Italy’s head coach to direct the Formula One driver’s project.
A number of Formula 1 teams have gone on to become involved in the professional peloton, with WorldTour outfits joining forces with motor-racing teams. Ineos have partnered with Mercedes, McLaren replaced Merida as co-headline sponsors of the Bahraini squad for just one season, while Israel Start – Up Nation teamed up with Williams at the beginning of the 2020 season.