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Michael Torkler (BikeNZ - PureBlack), winner of the 2012 Tour of Borneo
BikeNZ-PureBlack rider suffered over 20 fractures to his skull
BikeNZ-PureBlack rider Michael Torckler is reported to be recovering well in hospital after he was the victim of a hit-and-run.
Torckler was training in Alexander Valley, Sonoma County with members of the Bissel Pro Cycling team with whom he will ride for next season, in preparation for the Cascade Classic later this month. He was on a high-speed descent when he collided with an on-coming car.
The alleged driver of the vehicle was later arrested.
The Tour of Borneo winner suffered over 20 fractures to his skull and was initially listed as being in a critical condition but his condition improved before being moved to intensive care. CAT scans revealed the cyclist remarkably did not suffer any brain damage. The 26-year-old's face took the brunt of the impact with his helmet left largely intact.
Torckler's parents flew from New Zealand to be with their injured son.
"His recovery has been absolutely amazing," Mr Torckler told the Taranaki Daily News on Monday.
"Even though he looks as if he's almost dead in his bed and his face is swollen and he looks as if he's been in a boxing ring with Mike Tyson, he's reasonably comfortable."
Doctors were initially unsure of Torckler's prognosis but according to his father, he could be released in as soon as 10 days.
"Even now they are saying Michael could stand up and walk out of here breathing strongly, then we will just look after him."