During the early stages of the second lap in the Junior Manx GP race on Thursday morning, Royce was involved in an accident at Union Mills, a fast section of the Mountain Course.
Royce said he entered the left-hander into Union Mills a bit too quick. The front developed a wobble and he was forced wide onto the footpath, couldn’t bring it back and hit the telegraph pole. The pole snapped in half, bringing down live wires and scattering debris, which resulted in a red flag to the race. The bike was literally destroyed on impact, with nothing salvageable. All the witnesses believe Royce is the luckiest guy around to survive what they saw.
Parents Debbie and Les Rowe, along with Royce’s partner Beth, went straight to the hospital to find Royce in a fair bit of pain, but conscious and talking. He has a big break to the right fibia, a complex break of the left tibia and complex break of the right wrist. All up, it’s 24 fractures within the legs and wrist. The doctors found no head, spine or internal injuries, which is extremely lucky.
They couldn’t do anything at Nobles Hospital on the Island so he was air-lifted almost straight away to Aintree University Hospital in Liverpool. He’ll undergo surgery over there and they estimate that he’ll be in hospital there for a few months. Despite being in pain he was still in good spirits, and strongly wanted to tell everyone who has supported us ‘thanks’ and also said to say ‘sorry’.
The team went down to Union Mills to collect the bike after Royce had been flown out. When the spectators, ambo’s and marshalls discovered who they were, everyone was amazingly supportive, offering to do anything they could to help.
It was evident that Royce had generated a lot of admiration and respect from all who have seen him this last couple of weeks and all were of the opinion that he was a genuine champion of the Isle of Man circuit.
The team would like to thank everyone for their support at home in Oz and here in the Isle of Man. Thanks to the paramedics of the Phil Hogg Motorsport Rescue Service (an ambulance service for the TT and Manx GP in honour of Phil Hogg who passed away in the 1989 TT) and the staff at Nobles Hospital.
When more information comes to hand, we will keep you updated.