Winterbottom breaks leg in water ski accident

Orrcon Steel FPR driver Mark Winterbottom

Orrcon Steel FPR driver Mark Winterbottom

Mark Winterbottom’s preparations for the 2012 V8 Supercars Championship have been dealt a blow after breaking his leg in a water skiing accident.

The #5 Orrcon Steel Ford Performance Racing driver suffered a fall while on a water skiing holiday with friends, breaking his left tibia.

The factory Ford driver was admitted to hospital where he underwent surgery. Doctors placed two metal plates in his leg to assist his recovery.

Winterbottom has since had the cast removed and is back to training, albeit at a reduced level.

FPR team principal Tim Edwards confirmed the injury and says that he is not concerned about Winterbottom’s fitness ahead of the 2012 V8 Supercars season.

“From our team’s point of view, it’s not much of a problem – he is well on the way to returning to full fitness and will be fit for testing in February,” Edwards told Speedcafe.com.

Winterbottom in recovery mode

Winterbottom in recovery mode at his Melbourne home

“He’s in the gym training with the guys from the Essendon Football Club, so there’s no real concern over his health.

“I haven’t been concerned with him missing any testing or races.

“He’s been dealing with the best people and he has kept me in the loop with how his recovery is going.”

Edwards says that his rehabilitation will be helped by Winterbottom’s high level of fitness.

“He is obsessed with his training, so mentally it would have been frustrating because he loves nothing more than going out for a run,” Edwards said.

“It’s all positive that he’s back in training. We’re far enough out of the start of the season that there’s no issues. Even if there were long terms issues, it’s his left leg which only operates the clutch.

“So in some ways, it’s fortunate.”

Winterbottom finished third in last year’s V8 Supercars Championship.

The V8 Supercars will hit the track for the first time in 2012 at the official pre-season test at Sandown Raceway on February 11.

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