Linton speedway racer's return after suffering brain injury in crash

A muddy field - Gosbeck, Suffolk. At the centre, motorbike number 7 at a very steep angle, as if turning.

Sam Norris at Gosbeck, Ipswich on June 26 - Credit: Jeff Welch

A speedway rider from Linton, Cambridgeshire is competing again two years after suffering a brain injury in a crash.

Sam Norris, then 15, was left in a coma on life support after a "horror crash" at the 2019 British Speedway Youth Championships in Glasgow.

Now 17, Sam is back on his 250cc motorbike.

He won his first two races since the injury on Saturday, June 26 in Gosbeck, near Ipswich.

Sam said his win at Gosbeck puts him on course to get back to what he was doing before the crash, winning races at some of Britain's top speedway events.

A boy with tussled brown hair smiling. He wears protective motorbiking gear at Gosbeck, Ipswich

Sam Norris, 17, returned to grasstrack motorsport with two wins at Gosbeck, Ipswich - Credit: Carol Downie

He said: "In my recovery, I willed myself to get better so I could ride again. It took lots of determination.

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"To win at Gosbeck felt fantastic as I've worked so hard mentally and physically to get to this stage."

The Gosbeck competition was a grass track event, but Sam hopes to return to speedway soon.

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"I intend to take things slowly," he said. "By the end of the year, I want to have had a few practice sessions at speedway and take it from there."

Sam suffered a brain injury after he was hit by a bike travelling at 50mph.

He was put into intensive care at a Glasgow hospital, but by summer 2020, he sat his GCSEs at Linton Village College as his recovery continued.

A much-loved speedway racer, Sam's supporters and friends raised more than £9,000 to help his family pay for travel and accommodation costs while he received treatment in Glasgow.

Sam's mum, Claire Norris, said she is "proud" of her son for working towards his speedway dream.

"It's down to Sam's determination that he has not given up on his dream of getting back to racing," she said. 

"He is achieving his goals in competitive racing which makes us very proud.

"Life stood still after Sam received his traumatic brain injury and we took it each day as it came.

"As parents the worry and anxiety is still there, but you can't take someone's dream away from them after they have worked so hard to achieve it."

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