Ryan Farquhar is moved out of intensive care unit
A top motorcyclist is out of intensive care after sustaining horrendous injuries after he was flung from his bike at the North West 200.
Dungannon racer Ryan Farquhar suffered injuries to the chest and pelvis when he crashed during the Supertwins race on Friday.
Mr Farquhar (40) was airlifted to the Royal Victoria Hospital for surgery and was placed in a medically-induced coma. The hospital yesterday confirmed that the rider, who resumed road racing in 2014 after retiring in 2012, was now out of intensive care and in a stable condition.
The good news has been tempered by the death of fellow rider Malachi Mitchell-Thomas, who was killed as he took part in his first North West 200 race.
Mr Mitchell-Thomas (20), from Chorley, died at the scene. His father Kevin Thomas said the remains of his son will be returned to his Lancashire home later today to allow family and friends to say their final goodbyes. He will rest at Charnock Richard Crematorium, Chorley, until the service on May 24.
A toast will be held afterwards to celebrate his life, and Mr Thomas said that all members of the racing fraternity were invited to attend.
He said: "Anybody who wishes to attend is more than welcome, although obviously the service can only accommodate so many, but it would be great to see any fellow bikers, drifters, petrolheads in general, friends and family."
He also asked that, in lieu of flowers, donations are made to the Air Ambulance in honour of the paramedics who battled for over 40 minutes to save Malachi.
His ashes will be scattered at the Isle of Man TT races next month.
Mr Mitchell-Thomas was the 17th rider to be killed at the 8.9-mile Portrush-Portstewart-Coleraine event.