You couldn't be in better hands than those of John Hinds after an accident
Everyone involved in motorcycle sport and all who knew him are stunned at the death of Travelling Doctor John Hinds.
'Doc John', as he was commonly known throughout racing, an intensive care consultant and anaesthetist in Craigavon Hospital, was an avid motorcycle racing enthusiast, even competing in a race meeting or two. It's fair to say that John saved the lives of many competitors through the rapid response intervention that the 'Flying Doc' and his medical colleagues provide at race tracks across Ireland.
As recently as the North West 200 in May, Dr Hinds attended the serious accident that left a spectator and two riders in hospital following a high-speed crash.
After that incident he was instrumental in highlighting the need for an air ambulance in Northern Ireland, attending a meeting with Health Minister Simon Hamilton to articulate not only his views but probably most of the country. He said at the time: "Trauma care in Northern Ireland is a lottery."
Dr Hinds also travelled the world lecturing in Trauma Science, and it is an accepted fact that here in Ireland the road racing scene is served by one of the most skilled medical response teams anywhere, with highly sophisticated equipment on hand in the event of a serious accident.
It was always said that if a spectator took ill at a road race, the equivalent of an A&E unit was at hand. You could not be in better hands, thanks to the experienced and well-equipped medical team, including Dr Hinds.
The medical world and road racing is all the poorer today for the sad loss of Dr Hinds, but nothing compared to the gap that is left within his family circle following this sudden, devastating and unexpected accident.
Deepest sympathy goes to his partner Janet and all within the family circle.
- Roy Harris is a motorcycle sport journalist