“The first prognosis we got was three months… to be told that I can be back on the road within three weeks of surgery is really the best I could have hoped for.”
As the Tour de France continues deep into its second week, it’s now one-week post surgery for Simon Gerrans.
The 35-year-old was forced to withdraw from the Tour after a crash on stage three resulted in a broken wrist. Whilst it’s obvious he would prefer to still be racing, there is some good news to come with today’s minor milestone.
“I had surgery on Friday, so a week ago today, and that went really well,” Simon said.
“As much as there was a lot broken in my wrist, they were breaks that the surgeon was able to repair really well. Each of the bones that had broken off were in fairly big chucks which meant they could piece it back together without too many complications.
“They put a couple of screws in my ulnar and plated and screwed my radius so it’s all solid and back into place now and we just have to wait for it to heal up.”
Rest and recovery were on the agenda for the day’s following surgery, but it wasn’t long before a check up provided even more good news. One week on, and the first session on the home trainer is already in the bag.
“Post surgery the surgeon was really pleased,” Simon said. “Then I went for a check up four days later to have some x-rays and again he was more than happy with how it had all come back together and the progress I had made in just a few short days.”
“In that checkup he gave me the go ahead to start riding on the trainer a few days later, once the scar tissue had ample time to heal over and I was right to start sweating without risk of infection.
“I started riding the ergo again yesterday.”
What began as a potentially season ending diagnosis has thankfully been given a more positive outlook on what has been a tough year.
“As messy as it was at the start, and we got a couple of pretty grim scenarios on how long the recovery time would be, it’s all sort of coming together pretty quickly now which I am really pleased about,” Simon said.
“From the last appointment, the plan is that I am going to have a couple of weeks ahead of me on the home trainer and then around three and a half weeks post surgery, which was a week ago now, I’ll be able to get back on the road again.
“The first prognosis we got was three months. Even if we halved that, it was still going to be pretty much the end of my season so to be told that I can be back on the road within three weeks of surgery is really the best I could have hoped for.
“I go in for another checkup next week so hopefully that is still the plan and everything is on track.”
Conscious that everything has to go to plan, in a year that has done anything but, Simon has set a return target on the Tour of Spain in late August.
“At this stage the goal is to be ready to be racing for the Tour of Spain,” Simon said. “But in saying that, everything needs to continue on track and I can’t really afford to have any setbacks between now and then for that to happen.”
“I know there are a whole bunch of guys in ORICA-GreenEDGE who are really motivated to race the Tour of Spain so if there is any question over my condition, I will be upfront and honest with the team and my teammates and give someone else the opportunity.
“But if everything stays on track, I should be at the start of the Tour of Spain and competitive.”