CHB motorsport ace Sam Barry is back home recuperating after undergoing surgery to remove part of his lower skull.

The 23-year-old former national V8 Ute Series champion, who won rookie driver of the year in his first season in the 2016/17 NZ Touring Car Championships, travelled to Wellington for the surgery to repair a Chiari malformation, where the brain sits too low, causing pressure on the skull and the spine.

"So you're born with this condition and you don't really know about it until you're generally [in your] late teens to adulthood really."

"The surgery took five hours [but] all went to plan. I was under for seven hours so I am feeling the side effects of that now," said Barry last week, after he returned home to Waipukurau on June 24.

Barry said he had been sleeping most days after the surgery due to the side effects of the post-operative medication he was on.

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The "motorsport driver by choice, and engineer by trade" repeated he was unsure how long it would be before he could get behind the wheel again or return to his job at Stevenson and Taylor in Waipukurau.

"Recovery time is anywhere from six weeks to one year," he said.

In a video posted to his Sam Barry Racing Facebook page before the surgery, the talented motorsport driver revealed he had known for 12 months that he had the condition, which he said affected about one person out of every 1000.

"So you're born with this condition and you don't really know about it until you're generally [in your] late teens to adulthood really."

He discovered he had the condition after suffering a "massive" headache, and blacking out and being unable to walk after a visit to the gym to do some deadlifts as part of his training ahead of his first touring car season.

After a visit to a neurologist, Barry said an MRI scan revealed that some of his brain signals were "too low" due to his lower brain being compressed between his skull and spine.

On June 20 he travelled to Wellington where he underwent decompression surgery, which he said would involve removing part of his skull and replacing it with a "patch" to give his brain "more room".

In his video Barry apologised for keeping the matter "private".

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I hope this video helps share the word on what Chiari Malformation's are and how common the condition is. On the 20th of June I will be having decompression surgery. I can't wait to get back to 110% in the near future. Thanks again Sam Barry

Posted by Sam Barry Racing on Sunday, 18 June 2017

He thanked his family, partner, employer and those within the racing industry that knew about the condition for their support, and hoped for a speedy recovery. "I can't wait to get back to 110 per cent," he said.