|Sauber Formula One driver Sergio Perez of Mexico talks to the media ahead of the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix at the Sepang circuit outside Kuala Lumpur in this April 7, 2011 photo. (REUTERS/Tim Chong)
MONTREAL -- A concussion suffered by Sauber Formula One driver Sergio Perez two weeks ago at the Monaco Grand Prix has knocked him out of Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix.
Perez joins a long list of athletes in numerous sports who have been sidelined by head injuries this season.
His injury came in a horrific crash during qualifying at Monaco. He was hospitalized overnight but felt well enough to come to Circuit Gilles Villeneuve with the team this week.
Perez, of Mexico, was given medical clearance Thursday to get back in the car for Friday morning's free practice.
After a 90-minutre session in the car, however, Perez told the team he felt sick to his stomach.
Sauber named Spanish veteran Pedro de la Rosa to take over for Perez for the rest of the weekend, including Sunday's Grand Prix.
"Of course I wanted to drive and I had no doubt I was alright," Perez said. "But apparently this is not the case. I am deeply disappointed.
"I spoke to the team after the session and told them I'm not 100% fit. I only want to drive when I'm 100% well. I need some more time to recover."
Team owner Peter Sauber was caught by surprise by the symptoms that Perez developed.
"Sergio underwent thorough medical checks, first in the hospital in Monaco, then in a hospital in Zürich, and finally, the FIA doctors gave him the green light this Thursday in Montreal," Sauber said in a team statement. "Nobody could have foreseen that he would feel unwell. Maybe we are being overly cautious, but when it's about the health of our drivers we take zero risks."
-- Dean McNulty
MONTREAL -- Canadian Bruno Spengler leads the DTM touring car series by 23 points and looks like he could earn his first championship this season for the high-powered Mercedes team.
But in spite of his on-track heroics and his Hollywood movie star good looks Spengler is in Montreal with Mercedes as a guest and not part of his dream job as a Formula One driver.
Every year Spengler is mentioned as a driver most likely to be promoted to F-1 and yet every year he is left behind.
At age 27, it is widely held that there won't be too many more chances for the Montreal driver.
In an interview Friday at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve Spengler admitted he did have talks this past winter with a number of NASCAR teams about a career in North American stock car racing.
"Right now I want to concentrate on winning the DTM championship for Mercedes," he said. "But yes, I did have discussions with some NASCAR teams."
Spengler said one of the races he would love to be part of is the NASCAR Nationwide Series NAPA 200 in Montreal in August.
But at the same time he realizes he must pledge allegiance to Mercedes and the DTM series.
"DTM is much like NASCAR," he said. "We get 150,000 fans to some of our races. It is very competitive. In Europe it is right next to Formula One in popularity."
Spengler's goal is to parlay his DTM success into an F-1 contract with Mercedes, but he also knows he can't wait forever.
-- Dean McNulty