Guillaume Moreau has finally returned home after spending the last two-and-a-half months recovering from injuries sustained in testing for the Le Mans 24 Hours
at specialist rehabilitation centre The Arch.
The Frenchman's violent accident at Circuit de la Sarthe during the Le Mans test day on 3 June caused severe trauma to his spinal cord that required two operations at the University Hospital of Angers. With the initial rehabilitation now complete, however, Moreau will begin a new phase of recovery helped by the sports medicine department, headed by Dr Jean-Yves Salle, at the CHU Limoges in his home region of Le Limousin.
The OAK Racing driver's speedy progress at The Arch prompted doctors to cut short his stay, allowing him to return home while continuing daily rehabilitation. Indeed, Moreau is now walking, albeit without full fluidity, driving his car and has even succeeded in cycling. The majority of his muscles have recovered their full movement in the timeframe expected by the medical team after his second operation and, in some cases, even faster. While complete sensitivity has not yet returned, the recovery process is continuing to follow a logical course that offers much hope for the future.
“When I discover that I am not progressing fast enough, and feel that I have reached a plateau, I remember the diagnosis upon arriving at the hospital along with the wheelchair-bound future that had been predicted," Moreau admits, "But, two-and-a-half months later, I can walk, which is the first miracle.
All of the Frenchman's energy has gone into this initial step of what will be a lengthy recovery process, but it is now vital that he spares some efforts while continuing rehabilitation to allow his body time to fully recover. It will only be after this phase that doctors can, at the end of the year, establish a prognosis for the level of ultimate recovery.
"The aim of the surgeon who operated in Angers, Dr Lucas, was to afford me an opportunity to get back in a racing car and December offers me a new target, when the first verdict will be given," Moreau continues, "I know that the road is still long and uncertain, but I have the same objective as the surgeon. An accident like mine leads to much thought and awareness of, in particular, the question of safety, which unfortunately requires accidents of this nature to take place in order for further advances to be made. But the passion is still there. I have also remained in very close contact with my team, with whom I have on-going exchanges.
“In the meantime, I am very happy to be back home and amongst familiar surroundings again. I will start rehabilitation at CHU Limoges and, in parallel, can regain fitness thanks to my osteopath Patrick Jouhaud and my physical trainer Sophie Roulaud. Both have followed me for years and know me well. Theirs will be valuable support during this new phase, which might put my patience to the test!”