Johnny Bellis is expected to be released from hospital this weekend and return to the Isle of Man for the first time since his scooter accident last September.
Bellis' crash occurred in the early hours of September 19, near Quarrata, Italy. He suffered massive head injuries and was placed in an induced coma for four weeks. A feeding tube became dislodged and he developed peritonitis, requiring emergency surgery.
The 21-year-old was transported back to London at the beginning of November, and a month later was transferred to The Wellington Hospital, in London for rehabilitation.
“Johnny has been so driven and worked so hard that his accomplishments are well known at The Wellington and he has been an inspiration to the staff and other patients there,” Team Saxo Bank said in a press release.
Team owner Bjarne Riis and managing director Trey Greenwood recently visited Bellis. “We all went for a walk and stopped by a café to have a coffee. But you know, once we sat down, we ended up speaking about nutrition, weight gain and training all afternoon anyway,” said Riis.
“There was just no way around it. Johnny wants to come back and we are motivated to help him. But he has no pressure from our side, only backing and support. Bradley McGee is working with him to get his training started and the team will be there for him with anything he needs.”
Bellis will now stay on the Isle of Man the next few months, “continuing his recovery and training to build his body back up to strength.” It is not yet known whether he will be able to return to either the pro team or the UK national track team.