Sebastien Bourdais to race 14 weeks after Indy accident

FILE - In this May 19, 2017, file photo, Sebastien Bourdais, of France, unpacks his helmet as he prepares to drive during a practice session for the Indianapolis 500 IndyCar auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis. Bourdais has been cleared to resume racing, nearly three months after crashing during Indianapolis 500 qualifying. IndyCar medical director Dr. Geoffrey Billows said Wednesday, Aug. 16, that the 38-year-old Frenchman was evaluated by IndyCar orthopedic consultant Dr. Kevin Scheid on Tuesday and given clearance to fully return to racing activities. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Sebastien Bourdais will return to IndyCar competition this weekend after a three-month recovery from an accident at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The Frenchman fractured his pelvis and right hip during a crash while qualifying for the Indianapolis 500. A return this season seemed to be a stretch, but Bourdais vowed to race in next month’s season finale.

Bourdais will do even better than that. His rapid recovery gives him his seat back for the final three races of the season, starting Saturday night at Gateway Motorsports Park. He had actually been cleared to race earlier this month, but Dale Coyne Racing allowed replacement driver Esteban Gutierrez to drive last weekend at Pocono Raceway.

Bourdais is a four-time series champion and won the season-opening race this year at St. Petersburg, Florida.

“You have no idea how excited I am to be getting back in the car this weekend and for the remainder of the season,” Bourdais said. “It’s been a long 14 weeks and I’ve worked very hard to get to this point. Following the crash, I had one goal in mind and that was to be back for Sonoma, and here I am getting back in the car with three races to go.

“It’s a bit unbelievable but I can’t wait to try out that new surface at Gateway this weekend.”

Bourdais has tested an Indy car since his accident, but will be back on track in full competitive mode on Friday when the series returns to Gateway.

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