Monger praises 'inspirational support' from motorsport family


Billy Monger has spoken about how much the support he's received from across the world of motorsport has meant to him.

The teenage Formula 4 driver suffered a horrendous crash while racing at Donington Park last month. Unsighted by another car, he smashed into the back of a rival at high speed. It took more than an hour for rescue workers to free him, and he subsequently underwent the amputation of both lower legs.

An online fund-raising campaign has seen more than £800,000 pledged to support Monger. That includes pledges of £15,000 from Jenson Button and Max Verstappen.

Still in hospital, Monger turned 18 on Friday. He received a letter of support from the Grand Prix Drivers Association, signed by dozens of motor racing stars from around the world.

"I saw the letter at the front and thought, 'Oh that's amazing'," he told Sky News in a special video message filmed at the Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham.

"I turned over and there were signatures from many world champions: Lewis Hamilton, Niki Lauda - that really touched my heart.

"Some of the names on here, they're my heroes. So yeah, I was lost for words - and I still am now.

"All the support just makes me more determined to get back in the car and get racing again. That's the goal."

Many Formula 1 teams sported decals with the hashtag #BillyWhizz at the Russian Grand Prix. Monger was able to watch the race after the hospital staff set up a projector in his room.

Monger was due to be discharged from hospital this weekend. There was a full turn-out on Sunday morning at Thuxton to show support from everyone in Formula 4 and the British Touring Cars Championship.

"With the help of everyone, he's come on in leaps and bounds," said JHR team boss Steven Hunter. "It's amazing to see the support he has had. Not only in the hospital but also across the public, motorsport, mums and dads everywhere.

GALLERY: Alonso's Indy 500 challenger

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter