James Courtney is expecting to resume full training this week as he continues to recover from a broken leg.
The Holden Racing Team driver was forced to miss last year’s season finale after fracturing his leg in a horrific accident with Alexandre Premat at Phillip Island in November.
The 2010 V8 Supercars champion was diagnosed with a fractured tibia and torn quad muscle while he also injured his finger in the collision with the rear of Premat’s Commodore making a nasty intrusion on the driver’s side door.
Courtney returned to his Gold Coast home last week after spending Christmas and New Year in Europe.
The 33-year-old has revealed that his leg is recovering well and he is expecting to receive the green light from doctors to return to full training next week.
His injured finger, however, is still causing him some concern.
“The leg is mint”, Courtney told Speedcafe.com.
“I’ve just got to go and see the bone specialist on Wednesday and then he will give me the green light to go and start running ‘marathons’.
“I can train now but I can’t do any high impact stuff. I can still do a lot of cycling and I started doing that this week.
“Everything is good. The only thing that is troubling me is my finger apart from that everything else has come along well.”
This season will see Courtney reconnect with close friend and colleague Adrian Burgess, who has switched from Triple Eight Engineering to become HRT’s new team manager.
Burgess, who also spent the Christmas break with family back in his native England, officially started with the Holden factory operation last Friday.
After originally working together successfully in British F3 in 2002, Burgess followed Courtney to Australia and to Dick Johnson Racing in 2010, which culminated in a maiden V8 Supercar title.
The arrival of Burgess at Walkinshaw Racing is just one of several management changes at the team, which includes the departure of Scott Sinclair, who confirmed his new role at Nissan Motorsport recently.
Sinclair followed Courtney to HRT from the 2010 championship winning Dick Johnson Racing squad.
Following the raft of management changes, Courtney is eager for the new season to begin and believes it won’t take long before HRT and Burgess enjoys success.
“Its crazy to be working with Adrian again”, added Courtney.
“I’ve said all along that I’m pretty excited to be back working with Adrian. We have a great a history and have known each over a long time.
“Its a pretty good future for HRT with all the personnel shifts and moves have been very positive. A couple of hard decisions have been made but they had to be made.
“All the boys on my car will be the same as I had last year. One of my mechanics has changed on my side.
“The engineers that are coming on are good so it will just be a matter of Adrian getting to know all the faces and getting his feet under the desk.
“He has been around the industry long enough to know what is good and bad and what strengths are needed. He will pick that out very quickly.
“Performance wise the cars are good and we have everything on board to do well. I think the future of the team is good.”