Moss in hospital after falling down lift

Last Updated: Mar 09, 2010, 09:02 AM IST

London: British motor racing great Stirling Moss is recovering in hospital after plunging three stories down a lift shaft at his home and breaking both ankles.

A family statement on his website said that Moss, who celebrated his 80th birthday last September, suffered the accident on Saturday and underwent surgery the next day.

Moss, widely known as the greatest driver never to win the Formula One championship, opened a lift door on the third floor of his house in central London and stepped forwards but due to a malfunction the lift had stopped on the floor above.

He also broke four bones in his feet, suffered four chipped vertebrae and skin abrasions but remained conscious throughout. He was expected to take six weeks to recover.

"The family are very relieved that Stirling survived the fall, demonstrating that his body still has the same resilience to injury as it did in his racing days," the statement said.

"He is comfortable, following a good night`s rest post surgery, and is well on the road to recovery."

The driver`s wife Susie was quoted earlier by a friend as saying Moss was in good spirits and already complaining about the size and quality of the hospital breakfast.

Moss was a contemporary of the late Argentine world champion Juan Manuel Fangio.

The Briton lost the 1958 title by a single point to compatriot Mike Hawthorn, his country`s first champion, despite winning four races to his rival`s sole victory.

Winner of 16 grands prix, Moss finished overall runner-up on three more occasions and retired after a career-ending 1962 crash at Goodwood.

Bureau Report