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Its a wrap…but a new beginning

March 25th, 2014

Well what a year it’s been!!!   It would take too long to recount my long journey back to recovery from the crash at Le  Mans in September and the emotional roller coaster that I have been on.

I have enjoyed this year, largely down to my two great teams, one being the Honda TT Legends.  Things didn’t quite go to plan caused by various issues we had, and with only 4 races a year,  if you miss a Round then you’re up against it!  During the first round of the World Endurance in Bol Dor we experienced a break down making the rest of the season tough.  On the plus side, being part of a close knit team and travelling across Europe and Japan was fun!

The unknown for me this season was working alongside Lee Hardy and his Royal Air Force Reserves Racing Team in Association with Honda…..(long name I know!).  It has been a good year with this team and I always looked forward to every weekend and working with them. They stepped up to the mark this year, learning the roads and were to became one of the best outfits in the British Superstock Championship. We had an uphill battle this year and even though our results on paper were not the best,  we did have a few team personal wins and a podium.

I did not remember very much after my accident in September at  Lé Mans and I was trying to piece everything together with the information that different people were sending me. Eventually, the team who owned the bike that I had hit contacted Damien Cudlin. They sent me an apology for their bike which suddenly shut down coming to an abrupt halt, leaving me with nowhere to go.  The collision happened early in the race and whilst trying to dodge a slow rider is hard enough at 150mph, its nigh on impossible trying to stop when one shuts down right in front of you whilst heading for an apex!  I have been analysing everything I can in order to minimise the possibility of anything like this happening again ….  other than trying to stay away from all the  50+ racers out on track!

I have drawn a line under it now and I am moving on, I nearly killed myself…but technically,  I had mainly broken bones and these mend quite quickly, my other injuries where a little more complicated but my second Team, Harris and Ross, took me on.

I owe a lot to Darren Roberts and his dedicated team at Harris & Ross for taking me on and literally teaching me to walk again in the hydro pool, slowly progressing to deadlifting heavy weights again. It meant moving up to Manchester with Darrens family, who very kindly put up with me for the best part of two months. The facilities that they have at the different gyms are fantastic with Alter G walking machines, hydro pools, strength gym, rehab gym and great physio’s working very hands on.  It should be described as a hobble and walk out centre!

At the moment, all my Shoei helmets along with my PSI leathers are being made and sprayed up so I am looking forward to everything arriving soon,  reminding myself  after incredible journey that I have been on that I am in fact a racer!

I begin testing with the RAF Reserves Honda Superbike this Sunday, 30th March at Cadwell Park before heading to the official BSB test at Donington Park the next day.

Bring on the 2014 season!



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