Update on the Racers Injured at Key West

December 06, 1995

by Andy Newman

MIAMI -- Two offshore powerboat racers involved in separate racing accidents one month ago at the Key West World Championship have made significant progress recovering from critical injuries, according to Super Boat Racing medical and safety director David Di Petrillo. Both accidents occurred Nov. 8 during the first of two heats that comprised the world championship.

Chicago resident James Finkl, 32, who was hurt after his Black Shadow Pro stock boat was struck by a larger, Open class entry has been discharged from Miami's Cedars Medical Center in good condition. He is currently receiving "continued" treatment at a Sarasota, Fla., rehabilitation center.

Although still at Cedars, Carlos Gonzalez, 26, of Miami has been upgraded to fair condition, is expected to be released and admitted to a rehabilitation facility soon, Di Petrillo said Thursday. Gonzalez was the navigator of Mr. K/Frank's Marine, a 33-foot monohull that tripped on a wave and slammed, front first, into a wave at 80 mph. The accident left throttleman Jose Fereira, 41, of Miami dead. The boat's driver, Rolando Garcia of Hialeah, Fla., checked out of Lower Keys Health System hospital less than a week after the accident. "Rapid, appropriate care is the key to trauma services," Di Petrillo said. "I think their (Finkl and Gonzalez) recovery proves the importance of a quality medical rescue system like the one we had in Key West."

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Last updated on Wednesday, December 06, 1995