As you all know I was involved in a nasty crash on Sunday the 4th of June in Daugavpils, Latvia. I ripped my ACL ligament, partially ripped my MCL, ripped the inside and outside meniscus as well as cartilage damage on my femur going into my right knee. I then had 3 weeks of intensive daily rehabilitation and physio to get back on a bike as soon as possible.
Thursday last week I made the decision to step down from my team place at Poole after a talking with Matt Ford, Promoter of Poole Speedway. I decided it was the best for me and also the team, if they got someone in to replace me, which he agreed with. I simply couldn’t ride to my full potential and it cost the team two wins with me only scoring 1 point in both meeting I rode.
A couple of days later I raced in the 2nd Round of the European Championships, scoring a satisfying 5 points. My knee however was very swollen and sore. After seeing a physio and specialist Monday, I have decided to definitely pull the plug for the rest 2017 and get a operation on my knee, so I can be 100% fit and ready for the start of next season.
It has been one of the hardest decisions to make in my career as I’m ready to race in my head, but my body isn’t. And my health is more important than anything and it’s not good for me or my competitors, when I don’t feel I can be in control of the bike when riding – as many of you have seen.
I’ve already missed around 16 meetings while being out injured as well as the injuries I got when I crashed in Torun. On top of that, I will look to miss around 28 meetings and for people who got a bit of knowledge about speedway, that is more than half a seasons worth of meetings. So it is not because my bank account is agreeing with the decision, but I have to be sensible, as I wouldn’t earn a profit scoring 1-4 points every meeting.
This year I have more or less achieved all of my goals and been much more consistent, bar a couple of meetings. I have been in the best shape so far in my career thanks to working with some great people, who has managed to push me. I believe I have moved a step further forward compared to last year and I grew a lot within the first couple of months, physically and mentally. So it sucks that the train has come to its final destination, as there still is so much more to race for!
I can’t however, thank all my clubs enough for their support and being understanding about my decision. Especially Poole and Matt Ford who has been very supportive and even set up donations at the next two home meetings at Poole, as well as offering me financial support if need be.
My sponsors who had been behind me from the start of the season as well as through my time out – without them, it wouldn’t be possible to compete at the level I want to. And last but not least, all the members of my team and also my family. I have had such a good time with everyone that’s been involved and I’m grateful for having people helping me, wanting to achieve the same goals I want to.
Also, thanks a lot to all the supporters and fans who has been backing me this year. I will see you all again in 2018 – I look at the bright side of things, and getting my knee fixed now, will mean I can only come back fitter and stronger!
All the best,