News 22 Jul 2010

WSBK: Vermeulen keyhole surgery set for Friday in Spain

Aussie Chris Vermeulen will have keyhole surgery in Spain this week.

Aussie Chris Vermeulen will have keyhole surgery in Spain this week.

Kawasaki Racing Team rider Chris Vermeulen will undergo a knee operation this Friday after being declared unfit to ride for the remainder of the Superbike World Championship.

The Queenslander attended several consultations last week with a renowned sports surgeon Dr. Pruna in Barcelona where he underwent further scans to analyze the extent of his complicated right-knee injury.

The decision was made yesterday for Vermeulen to undergo keyhole surgery to repair the two of the three damaged ligaments, providing the stability in the knee that has been such a problem for Vermeulen over the last few months.

“The decision to sit out of the remainder of the 2010 race and test season was a mutual one from both me and the team,” Vermeulen commented. “It is only too apparent that I have not been able to recuperate from my right knee injury sustained at Phillip Island and the crash in Brno further set me back.

“The team have been patient with my slow recovery but it is not in my best interest or the teams to continue with the lack of progress we’ve made in a championship which is so competitive, even when you are 100 percent fit.

“I have sought expert medical advice in Barcelona this week where the specialists have advised I have keyhole surgery to clean up the damaged ligaments. I have been informed that I will be able to walk soon after but I’ll have to undergo extensive physiotherapy for at least two months so we will be based in Andorra for the time being! I will keep you posted after the operation via my website. ”

Although Vermeulen should be mobile within a week after the operation, the post-rehabilitation will be intensive therefore he will be based at his residence in Andorra, near Barcelona, for physiotherapy for two months after the operation. A full recovery is estimated between four to six months.

Vermeulen has been suffering with the injury since the Phillip Island race and is relieved to finally have a plan of action to ensure a return to full fitness in time for the 2011 Kawasaki race program.

Akira Yanagawa will replace Vermeulen for the Silverstone round, with an announcement set to be made who will ride the ZX-10R for the Kawasaki Racing Team for the last three rounds.