Joe Nation's Return From Injury

At the end of April, Joe Nation - who had just come off the back of a 13th placing at EWS Derby in Tasmania - was injured at home on local trails. Having made good progress with his recovery, he’s back to training on his local trails at the Christchurch Adventure Park, so we caught up with him for a few photos and to get the scoop on his current situation.

joe_nation-1035.jpg

"The crash happened on a local trail I'd ridden plenty of times. I was lacking a bit of concentration late in the day, which forced an error. I took a big fall and landed on my arm and head - luckily my head was fine, but my arm was in a bad way. I’d fractured and displaced my radial head and dislocated my ulnar.” So far, Joe’s recovery has been ahead of schedule - with progress every day - made easier thanks to world class, chairlift-accessible trails right on his doorstep!

“The recovery has been a learning curve, and a lot more hands on than expected. There's plenty to do in order to speed up the recovery time and keep up my strength and fitness, and I've been keeping myself busy. After eight weeks I'm able to ride down most local tracks, which is ahead of schedule."

joe_nation-1184.jpg

All going to plan, Joe aims to be back in time for EWS Whistler, a race he's placed inside the top 10 before:

"I've placed 9th in Whistler in the past - realistically though, as it's my first race back, I'm not expecting to be peaking there. Competing will help me find the race pace I had at the start of the season."

In December '18, it was announced that Joe had signed with the Pole Enduro Team for the 2019 EWS season. Having previously completed the past season as a privateer, this was his first pro contract.

joe_nation-1233.jpg

"I’m stoked to be on the Pole team! The bike’s amazing and the increased support from what I’ve previously had has allowed me to put more time into improving. They’ve been a great support throughout my injury too."

As with any recovery, it’s not been an easy road, and a few people have been key to helping Joe get back into race shape:

"I've had great recovery advice from Jamie Scott and his partner Anastasia, who both specialise in nutrition. Also, my coach Stephen Rickerby, who has kept me busy and fit. Finally, Pole Bicycles for sticking behind me throughout the injury."


Words & Images: Findley Watt

Subscribe to our print edition for the very best of New Zealand Mountain Biking