Cortese back from injury and looking for a competitive ride

| | WorldSBK
Picture: GeeBee Images

Sandro Cortese is coming toward the end of his recovery from the Portimao horror crash which saw him hospitalised with broken vertebrae, broken ribs, a torn ligament in his knee and fractured foot.

And the German rider is now looking towards a return to racing but will only come back for a competitive ride.

“It will be very tough to race this year; all of the good spots are taken and now, I will concentrate on my full recovery and see what the future brings,” said Cortese.

“I’m very thankful to still be alive, to walk normally and to enjoy normal life again. Of course, I really miss racing and I wish everything had happened differently but when you have such a hard time and a big accident, you are just thankful to be normal again.

“I was very close to being in a wheelchair and to realise this made me forget about other things.

I am pain free. I had a tough end to last year, with many months in recovery and rehabilitation, and also at the beginning of this year. I could not do a lot of sport but now, more and more, I can train again.

“I still need to have another operation to take out the plates, possibly in April. I had a check in December and everything looks good, but I wasn’t 100% recovered. The doctors said I need to come back at the end of February or the start of March and then we can make an appointment for the operation to remove the plates. The plate isn’t painful but, in some positions, it can be uncomfortable.

“My wish is to jump back on a bike with a competitive team. I’m 31, not too old for racing, so if I come back with a competitive team with competitive machinery, then I will.

“I am not the type of rider to just ‘be there’ in the paddock; if I come back, then I want to be at the front and fight for top positions.

“Racing is very quick, one minute you don’t have anything and then the next, you get a chance that you didn’t expect. My goal is to get back 100 per cent fit again and if the opportunity comes, I’ll take it.”