The top-end Giant carbon road bike fitted with a Dura Ace triple that I used in the Etape was damaged in the crash. It was only the bike’s third outing, the first being the Etape, the second a twenty mile training ride and the third was Saturday’s Leeds to Sheffield Tour of Britain preview stage led by Tony Doyle.
Finishing in Sheffield, I had to get the train back to Leeds and ride eight miles to where I’d parked the car that morning.
Two miles from the car, on a clear, fast stretch of the A61, an Audi TT joined the duel carriageway from a minor road, did not brake at the stop-line and wiped me out.
I had seen the car in my peripheral vision but was shocked when it suddenly took up a lot of space on the left hand side of me and then swept me into the air. I don’t remember falling or landing but I have cuts and bruises all over so must have rolled.
The young driver was apologetic, said he hadn’t seen me and was non-plussed when I told him he’d just totalled a very expensive bike. His insurance would sort that, he said.
As neither of us had pen or paper to exchange contact details, I took digital photos of the car, the driver, the car’s registration number and the residential street Audi had appeared from.
"I live on that street," said the driver. "I come out of it every day, I don’t know how I didn’t see you."
Within the hour I reported the ‘accident’ to the police and later filed a statement.
Sadly, I was unable to take part in Sunday’s Phil and Friends ride, the Peak District Challenge Ride organised by the CTC to honour its president, Phil Liggett. I’ve ridden all four previous Phil and Friends rides and was well miffed at missing the fifth one.
The CTC’s Challenge Rides raise money for the Cyclists’ Defence Fund, a pot of cash that is spent on defending cyclists injured by negligent drivers. I feel like I’ve just done ten rounds with Mike Tyson but I was lucky, I was hit by a low-slung Audi sports car not an SUV. And it looks like the driver will accept full responsibility. For when injuries are far worse and for when motorists choose to dispute claims, it’s good to know that the Cyclists’ Defence Fund exists…