Pain, pleasure, pain for James since freak accident
TO even be back on the track, let alone in the top 10, is an achievement for James Courtney.
Fans following Australia's hotly-contested Supercars championship would appreciate the remarkable recovery the Holden Racing Team driver has made since last year's freak accident.
Courtney suffered fractured ribs and a punctured lung when struck by debris dislodged by a flying helicopter at Sydney Motorsport Park.
Injuries from the accident forced Courtney to miss two of last year's three endur- ance rounds before his return at the Gold Coast 600.
Several months later, in a new season, Courtney still races with pain in his chest.
"It's all ongoing,'' Courtney said.
"Next week, or the week after, I go in for another operation to try and relieve some of the pain that's coming back.
"The way the ribs were broken, badly displaced, there was a lot of nerve damage so they are operating on all the nerves to try and get rid some of the pain.''
Despite the anguish, his motorsport passion runs deep. "It hasn't been a pleasant period but I just love my job and really enjoy racing,'' he said.
"It's something that makes me happy and something that I feel I'm in control and having a great time.
"There's not too many downsides to my job.''