Fernando Alonso of Spain and McLaren Honda is evacuated from the medical centre to the helicopter after crashing during the 2015 Formula One testing at the Barcelona Catalunya racetrack in Montmelo, Spain, Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Manu Fernandez
February 25, 2015

PARIS (AP) McLaren driver Fernando Alonso left hospital Wednesday following a crash in Formula One testing as the sport's governing body FIA launched an investigation into the accident.

The Spanish driver escaped serious injury but was flown to hospital for precautionary checks after his McLaren hit a wall at the Barcelona-Catalunya circuit on Sunday.

McLaren said in a statement on Wednesday that Alonso has now returned to his family's home in Spain to continue his recovery and will miss the final pre-season testing session, which starts Thursday on the same track and ends Sunday.

''As a result, he will sit out this week's final winter test, at which he was due to share driving duties with Jenson Button,'' McLaren said.

The team said Danish driver Kevin Magnussen, McLaren's test and reserve driver, will replace Alonso.

After assessing the damage to Alonso's car, McLaren said his crash was caused by ''unpredictably gusty winds at that part of the circuit at that time, and which had affected other drivers similarly.''

Toro Rosso's Spanish newcomer Carlos Sainz Jr. also hit the wall exiting turn three.

McLaren said it found no evidence of mechanical failure on the car and dismissed rumors that Alonso lost consciousness at the time of the crash because of an electrical discharge in the ERS (Energy Recovery) system.

FIA said it will investigate the circumstances surrounding the crash to find out if safety improvements can be made.

''We will look at it very accurately in order to understand it properly and to see what the community can learn from it,'' a FIA spokesman said.

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