Gino Rea Suzuka 8 Hours accident | Nervous wait for news after huge crash

There has been no official communication regarding Gino Rea since being airlifted to hospital on Saturday following a crash ahead of Suzuka 8 Hours

Gino Rea - FCC TSR Honda

UPDATE Tuesday 13.30: The family of Gino Rea have issued an official statement detailing the extent of his injuries and medical condition [click to view]

There remains no official word on the condition of British racer Gino Rea some 48 hours after he was knocked unconscious in an accident during preparations for the Suzuka 8 Hours endurance event.

Rea, 32, crashed heavily on the run towards the Triangle Chicane - the heavy-braking, low speed final corner that comes after the fast 130R left-hander - during Free Practice 2, prior to the Top 10 qualifying shootout on Saturday morning.

A brief statement from the Endurance World Championship (EWC) in the immediate aftermath confirmed he had been tended to at the circuit before being airlifted to hospital, but there has been no word from the series, Honda or Rea’s FCC TSR team since.

Japanese news outlet Kyodo News Agency reported on Saturday that Rea was knocked unconscious in the accident, citing local police sources, adding that marshals and spectators weren’t hurt either after his Honda was destroyed in an impact with the wall. Other sources have claimed he was in a coma and his helmet was badly damaged in the incident.

However, while the curiously protracted silence across official channels had given rise to the gravest fears for Rea’s condition, on Sunday evening two-time Endurance World Champion and WorldSBK race winner Terry Rymer tweeted that the Londoner was indeed alive and his condition was improving, though this remains unverified until Honda or EWC issue an official communication.

The tweet has been shared widely among fans and the racing community, including MotoGP riders Marc Marquez and Joan Mir.

Prior to the Suzuka 8 Hours getting underway, his FCC TSR Honda team-mates Josh Hook and Mike di Meglio participated in a ‘Get Well Soon, Gino’ photo-call on the grid.

A quick start - a traditional procedure that involves a sprint across the track to the bike positioned along the pit-wall - saw Hook lead the opening lap of the endurance race before being shuffled to fifth over the course of the hour. However, after technical issues necessitated an extended period in the pit box, the team slipped to as low as 19th before fighting back to secure tenth place.

Rea - the 2009 European Superstock 600 Champion - is competing in his first season of EWC as a factory racer with his move to Honda preceded by a series of giant-killing performances on the privateer Wojcik Yamaha the two previous seasons.

A race winner and multiple podium visitor at WorldSSP level, Rea also spent three seasons competing in Moto2 with scant success beyond a shock run to the podium in the wet at Sepang in 2012.

Making his Superbike debut with a move to BSB in 2018, a call up to the Buildbase Suzuki team mid-way through the 2020 season led to a full-time campaign in 2021 that yielded two victories at Donington Park.