IndyCar driver Robert Wickens, who was involved in a violent crash at Pocono Raceway in August, confirmed in a tweet Thursday night he is paralyzed from the waist down.
In a note on Twitter, the Schmidt-Peterson Motorsports Driver saying in part, "Did my first slide transfer as a paraplegic today."
Did my first slide transfer as a paraplegic today. My upper body is getting stronger everyday. I’ve only been posting videos of the small movement in my legs, but the reality is I am far away from walking on my own. I’ve never worked harder for anything in my life. More to come!! pic.twitter.com/lMw8XJgOck
— Robert Wickens (@robertwickens) October 26, 2018
Several videos posted recently on social media showed Wickens making small movements in his legs, but as Wickens wrote, "I am far away from walking on my own."
The 29-year-old Canadian driver was injured on Aug. 19 while attempting to pass Ryan Hunter-Reay. The two cars touched and in the midst of the crash, Wickens' car went airborne, hit a fun and spun several times, shredding to pieces.
At first, Wickens' injuries were described as "orthopedic," and he underwent spinal surgery just days later to stabilize a thoracic spinal fracture associated with a spinal cord injury. During the first surgery, titanium rods and screws were placed successfully in Wickens' spine. He also suffered two broken legs in the crash, a broken right forearm and a pulmonary contusion.
Despite not competing in the final races of the season, Wickens still won the Sunoco Rookie of the Year for the 2018 season. During his 14 races, he has seven top-five finishes and four podiums. He also won the pole for the first race of the year and was named Rookie of the Year at the 2018 Indianapolis 500 for his ninth-place finish.