Violet’s mum speaks about ‘freak accident’

Violet McAfee
Violet McAfee

The mother of a spectator who was seriously injured at the North West 200 has said she took a great deal of comfort from the prayers that had been offered for her

Violet McAfee had been a bystander when the collision occurred in Portstewart on Saturday.

She and two others – both motorbike riders – were hospitalised in the wake of the crash.

However Austrian rider Horst Saiger has since been discharged, while the conditions of Ms McAfee and Co Antrim rider Stephen Thompson were yesterday upgraded from “critical but stable” to simply “stable”.

Ms McAfee is reportedly aged 44 and from the Coleraine area. Her mother Kathleen said: “There’s been a lot of prayer for my daughter and the other rider and I know the power of prayer.

“It’s a great comfort. I am a Christian so I do know the power of prayer.”

The incident unfolded on a residential street, lined with numerous spectators.

Images from the immediate aftermath showed a motorcycle and debris strewn across the road just outside someone’s driveway.

Asked if she felt anything could have been done to prevent the incident, Kathleen McAfee told BBC Radio Foyle: “This is just an accident. Will it ever happen again? I don’t know. It’s a freak accident.”

She also told the broadcaster that she had been at work at the time and “went to pieces” upon hearing the news.

“I just couldn’t believe what I was hearing,” she said.

Meanwhile yesterday afternoon Mr Saiger wrote on his Facebook account: “I’m out of hospital and on my way home, my elbow is broken but I’ve to double check it with specialist at home, as there is also an old fracture.

“After that I know if a TT start is still possible or not. I wish Stephen and Violet who were badly injured at this crash a speedy recovery!”

Violet McAfee’s condition has been upgraded from ‘critical but stable’ to ‘stable’