Grapevine: Zanardi Returns to Scene of Accident

Alex Zanardi said on Wednesday he is not confronting any demons when he returns to the race track in Germany where he lost both his legs in a crash during a CART race.

Grapevine: Zanardi Returns to Scene of Accident

Alex Zanardi said on Wednesday he is not confronting any demons when he returns to the race track in Germany where he lost both his legs in a crash during a CART race.

"Obviously there will be something going through my mind," said the Italian, who drove for Lotus and Williams in Formula One and took the CART championship in 1997-1998. "I wouldn't be human otherwise, I guess. But, quite frankly, I feel that psychologically, the accident is definitely behind me," he said in a teleconference.

Zanardi has been named as grand marshal of the German 500 at the Lausitz Eurospeedway oval on May 11th. The CART race will be run at the German track for the first time since Zanardi's near-fatal crash in 2001.

The Italian's ability to come back from adversity goes back to a massive accident in his Lotus in qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps in 1993.

Zanardi now lives in Monaco with his wife Daniela and son Nicola. He is involved in projects such as racing and building go-karts for the physically challenged and is working on a mono-ski so that double amputees can return to the slopes.

"I have raced fantastic cars throughout many years and I've been able to enjoy great satisfaction at many different levels," he said. Now when he races go-karts he believes he gets fans' appreciation out of proportion to his pre-accident championship days.

"I think people take for granted that everything has got to be super difficult for me now and therefore, whenever I move a finger, I have a sort of ovation and everybody is clapping," Zanardi said.

When asked what duties he would have in Germany, Zanardi replied: "actually, we talked about something like this, driving the pace car or this and that. We were working on something originally but it wouldn't be a surprise if I tell you, anyway."

Asked if he was bringing his driver's helmet, he said, "We'll see."

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