AMAZING NEWS! LAGUNA SECA RACEWAY, Monterey, California (6 August) - Anyone who saw the accident involving Doug Chandler and Akira Yanagawa in the Corkscrew during a Superbike World Championship race here on Sunday, July 12, will probably be...
LAGUNA SECA RACEWAY, Monterey, California (6 August) - Anyone who saw the accident involving Doug Chandler and Akira Yanagawa in the Corkscrew during a Superbike World Championship race here on Sunday, July 12, will probably be more than amazed by the news that Yanagawa is planning to be back racing three weeks from now.
According to Paul Farmer, spokesman for the Kawasaki Superbike World Championship team, the 26-year-old Japanese rider will return to championship competition for rounds 19 and 20 at the A-1 Ring near Zeltweg, Austria, on Sunday, August 30.
In his first interview after the accident, Yanagawa said he suffered a fractured left hand, fractured left collarbone, two broken front teeth and a severe concussion and remembers nothing about the accident happening. He commented that, "Of course no accident is a good one, but this sort of thing could have happened to anyone. It is after all a part of my job! So, it has not affected my attitude towards racing, except now I realize how much I miss it. I would like to thank the hundreds of people who sent me cards, e-mails and faxes."
The accident occurred on Lap 13 of the first of two Superbike World Championship races during the Dunlop World Superbike Championship event. When, reportedly, the right handlebar on Chandler's bike broke, as he was braking from around 130mph before the Corkscrew, the bike swerved suddenly left onto the dirt and Chandler was thrown into the air. He flew toward the Corkscrew entrance where he hit Yanagawa's bike as Yanagawa was diving left into the turn. Both then went tumbling. Yanagawa was transported by Skylife helicopter to San Jose Medical Center where he was initially listed in critical but stable condition. After thorough examinations for head and spinal injuries, he was released to return to Japan two days later and spent a day in hospital there. Chandler's most serious injury was a sprained left ankle.