News 26 Aug 2016

Injury denies MX2 points leader Crawford of title shot

Championship leader ruled out of Coolum with internal injuries.

Image: MXN.

Image: MXN.

Queenslander Nathan Crawford won’t line up at this weekend’s Coolum Motul MX Nationals finals, the MX2 red plate holder injured during his final preparations this week.

Victory last week at Toowoomba saw Crawford retake the sole series lead with an 11-point advantage, however lacerations to his spleen and kidney have ended his title run.

“I copped a handlebar in the stomach,” said Crawford. “I felt pretty winded, but started to get all the oxygen back and noticed a little bit of pain down near the left side of my tummy, right down near the bottom. When I got home I ended up peeing a lot of blood.

“At the hospital I got all my scans done and basically they’ve told me I’m not well enough to ride and I definitely feel that physically I’m not strong enough at the moment in the tummy area to ride somewhere like Coolum. I don’t even think I could go for a jog right now so racing’s out of the question this weekend.

“It’s tough. I put in everything this year and obviously I do 100 percent every year but this year was just going really well. I showed lots of promise all year and put myself into a really good position going into Coolum, but as tough as it is not to be able to race and to give up the championship, obviously my health is a lot more important than that trophy.

“The CT scan showed that I lacerated my spleen and my kidney. Obviously it’s pretty severe – the laceration to my spleen is dangerous, but the one to my kidney is the one they are most cautious about. They don’t want me doing any more damage there.”

Crawford as been advised that the recovery period before he can participate in ‘contact sports’ could be around six weeks, which may rule him out of the first round of the Australian Supercross Championship.

“My main concern now is getting healthy and getting back there for supercross,” he added. “I’ve been told it’s six weeks before I can do any contact sports, so I might be missing the first round, but I’ll be definitely there for the second and the rest of the season.”

Husqvarna Australia has thrown its support behind the injured Crawford: “This is a devastating blow for Nathan, after he had positioned himself perfectly to win his first senior Australian championship.” said Husqvarna Australia general manager Jeff Leisk. “We are all right behind him and wish him a speedy recovery.”

“We wish Nathan all the best,” said marketing manager Brendan Drage. “His dedication to be the best this year has been a pleasure to see. And he’s such a fighter that I’m sure this won’t hold him back for long.”