Road racer stable and out of intensive care after North West 200 crash
Published 27/05/2016 | 20:41
A road racer who sustained life threatening injuries in a race has been moved out of Intensive Care.
Ryan Farquhar suffered injuries to his chest and pelvis in a smash at the North West 200 two weeks ago.
His condition at Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital is described as "stable" as he continues his recovery from the injuries.
Farquhar and Dan Cooper came off their bikes during the Supertwins race on the Black Hill section of the course.
It happened close to the spot on the Portrush coast road where 20-year-old rising star Malachi Mitchell-Thomas lost his life in an accident just two days later.
Cooper was taken to the Causeway Hospital in Coleraine with shoulder injuries but was later discharged.
Farquhar, who has won five races at the North West 200, retired from the sport in 2012 following the death of his uncle Trevor Ferguson at that year's Manx Grand Prix in the Isle of Man.
However, he resumed his road racing career in 2014, saying that his family backed his decision to return.
Following the terrifying 100mph smash 11 days ago, his relieved wife Karen told of the moment she knew Ryan had survived his terrible injuries and also posed for pictures alongside her husband just 24 hours after he had been moved from intensive care to a general ward.
Karen and her two children, Mya and Keeley, had witnessed the accident on the race big screens, which showed him crashing out and then being run over by fellow competitor Cooper.
As he was being flown to hospital by PSNI helicopter, anxious Karen was driven to Belfast, fearing the worst, despite Ryan's efforts to reassure her in a message relayed through his wife's cousin, who happened to be at the scene of the crash.
Through tears, Karen said: "I walked into intensive care and Ryan was lying in the bed not really able to speak or communicate with us.
"He looked up at me and winked and then he squeezed my hand as tight as anything.
"It was such an incredibly special moment because I knew then that he was going to be still with us."
Farquhar was taken straight into surgery when he arrived at the Royal, and said he "was lucky that the top liver surgeon in the country was available to operate" on him.
He spent several days in the Royal's intensive care unit before he was able to join fellow racer Paul Gartland, who also suffered a lacerated liver in an earlier North West 200 crash, on a general ward, where he was initially expected to stay for at least another week.