After leaving his sick bed to collect the Joey Dunlop Trophy as NGK Irish Motorcyclist of the year award, last week, Jonathan Rea is continuing to make a good recovery and remains focussed on regaining full fitness for 2008.
Jonathan Rea underwent Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) reconstruction in his right knee after the final round of the British Superbike championship and despite the operation itself being a success, Rea was readmitted to hospital with a serious infection.
Rea said: “I had the operation the week after Brands, but about a week after that I started feeling really weak and down and then at the end of the week I was rushed in to A&E because my knee had swollen up and needed draining.
“When I got there I was told that it didn’t need draining, it needed a six week course of antibiotics. They told me I was going to have to stay in for six weeks and receive the antibiotics intravenously.
“Thankfully I ended up being in for only two weeks and I’m out now and the infection is under control.
“Over the years the ligament has been ground away to nothing, which is why I had an operation on it half way through the year because if you don’t have an ACL your knee becomes susceptible to other injuries.
“The actual operation on my knee hasn’t been affected by the infection and over the last couple of weeks the actual knee has been feeling better and better.
“The graft itself has been a real success and I’m getting loads of movement back.”
There’s no doubt that the infection has been a real set-back as whilst his World Supersport rivals including Chris Walker and Tommy Hill get their first round of testing this month, Jonathan Rea is still unable to even train.
He said: “At the moment I’m not able to do very much, only light rehab stuff and I’ve not been able to train.
“If the Qatar test would have been a few weeks later I could have made it but I’m definitely on target for the Phillip Island test at the beginning of next year.”