Berwick Bandits received good news of Ricky Ashworth ahead of their home match at the weekend.
Before Berwick got their match with Somerset underway their team manager Ian Rae received a text message from Ricky Ashworth’s stepmother, Pam.
She had asked for the message to be read to the fans assembled on the night which was also the night of her step-son’s 31st birthday.
The club’s meeting presenter Dick Barrie relayed to fans that while Ricky’s condition was still the same, and he was still sleeping under the expert care of staff at the Intensive Care Unit at Hull Infirmary, Pam’s text had indeed put a few smiles on faces in the pits.
Barrie relayed the text message, saying: “Just so you can tell the fans tonight, Ricky has been yawning in front of me today (I’m probably boring him) and he’s reacting to the pain tests!
“Arms and legs have responded! He looks good.
“I think he can smell his birthday cake xx Pam”
The news was greeted with spontaneous applause from the crowd who proceeded to contribute to a bucket collection on behalf of Ricky and his family with £1,100 being raised. The Bandits have also been selling wristbands at speedway meetings across the country, with the profits going to the rider and his family.
Ashworth has been in intensive care since his crash in the match against Scunthorpe on August 2.
He came off his bike in heat 11 of the match - subsequently called off due to the lack of medical cover - while chasing down an opponent.
On the third lap his efforts caused an overslide as he emerged from the fourth bend.
His rear wheel appeared to make contact with the safety fence and he was thrown forward onto the track and rendered unconscious on landing.
Nearly two weeks ago it was reported by Ashworth’s sister that he was able to breathe on his own while in his coma.