JANUARY 20, 2005
Hartstein becomes F1 Medical Delegate
Professor Sid Watkins, the man who has been chiefly responsible for the improvement of safety in Formula 1 in the last 25 years is to step down from his role as the FIA Formula 1 Medical Delegate. His place will be taken by Gary Hartstein, associate professor of anaesthesiology and intensive care medicine at the University Hospital of Liege in Belgium. Hartsein has been working with Watkins for the last eight years. Watkins will continue to be involved with the sport through his presidency of the FIA Institute for Motor Sport Safety and is expected to be a regular visitor to Grands Prix in that role. Watkins's contribution to Formula 1 was recognised in 2002 with his appointment as an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE).
Hartstein is one of the few Americans working in F1 and comes originally from Staten Island, New York. Because of a shortage of places in US medical schools in the 1970s the moved to Belgium and stayde there until 1983 when he returned to New York and did emergency room work in the Bronx before returning to a quieter life in Belgium. In 1989 he began working as a doctor at Spa. The result was that he met Watkins and the two men hit it off and as a result Hartstein became a regular member of the team.
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