Berger crashes at Monza

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The Independent Online
The Austrian Gerhard Berger yesterday spun off the Monza circuit in his first outing in a Formula One car since three sinus operations and the death of his father.

His Benetton-Renault careered off the circuit at more than 186mph during a private practice session, but he escaped unhurt. "Thankfully I finished up in the grass, otherwise it could have been a serious accident. It hasn't been a great return," Berger said.

The 35-year-old, who has missed the last three grands prix, said he still has the desire to go on despite calls for his retirement after excellent performances by his rookie replacement, Alexander Wurz.

"I am not at all discouraged. I hope to continue to drive for two or three more seasons," Berger said.