Hamilton returns to site of crash

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Davey Hamilton tested at Texas Motor Speedway, where he plans to race again nearly nine years after almost losing his feet in a horrific accident at the track.

Hamilton's feet were so badly mangled after his wreck during a Texas race in June 2001 that doctors initially thought amputation would be the best option. Both legs and feet were broken.

The IndyCar driver instead had 21 surgeries to reconstruct his feet.

"I'm a little nervous. How can you not be?" Hamilton said Friday during the testing session for the June 5 race. "I ran good at this track. I've always liked racing here when we were full time before the accident. I always enjoyed coming to Texas. It's been something I wanted to come back and finish. "

Scott Dixon, Ryan Briscoe and Marco Andretti also participated in the open test Friday at the 1½-mile high-banked Texas track that has always been one of the IRL's fastest circuits.

Before that crash in 2001, Hamilton was the only driver who had started all 48 races in the history of what is now known as the IndyCar Series.

Jaret Schroeder's engine failed going into turn 2. He spun into Hamilton's car, which slammed into the wall with so much force that it lost all four tires.

The 47-year-old Hamilton is scheduled to drive in his fourth consecutive Indianapolis 500 this month, a week before returning to Texas.

Those are two of the three IRL races that Hamilton, the IRL series runner-up in 1997 and 1998, is planning to run this season for Luczo Dragon Racing. It will be his first multi-race season since his injuries at Texas in 2001.

"I just wanted to make sure I had a car and team that would be able to do it properly," Hamilton said. "Part of the recovery was purely to race again. I didn't want to end my career here."