Opening the account…

I was rummaging about trying to find an inspiring photo to kick me off on some creative blog odyssey, when I found this.  This was the result of a cycling crash at Eastway a year or two ago.  I did have the corresponding photos for my arm, shoulder, legs and backside but thought that I might incur the wrath of web policing software for showing too much bare flesh.  And to be honest, they still make me feel a bit queasy.  Now the pain has subsided, that macho mist occasionally wafts over me.  It’s all I can do to stop myself saying “want to look at my scars?”.  Not good at the bus stop.

I’d managed to hook handlebars with the rider to the left of me as the bunch of 80 riders I was in was speeding up for an intermediate sprint half way through the race.   He then catapulted me across the front of the bunch and I took out around 15 riders, and apart from me, extraordinarily only one other failed to finish.  During the flight though the cyclists I waited for the sound of a painful crunch but amazingly the crash didn’t result in any broken bones, although my helmet was in pieces afterwards.

Most amusingly, one bloke came up afterwards and said “I’m terribly sorry – I had to ride over you when you were lying down – I couldn’t avoid it”.  “That’s allright mate”, I said, “I never felt a thing”.

For those not in the know Eastway was a cycle race circuit in East London which had one great advantage:  at only a mile long it meant that if you got dropped by the peleton because it was going too fast, then you sat up and waited for it to come around behind you and joined in the fun again.  I spent most of my Eastway career doing such a thing.  Annoyingly, I was doing better in the race in which I crashed than ever before and had managed to stick with the bunch.

Eastway sadly is now no more, having recently had to make way for the Olympic juggernaut now arriving in town.   And with it goes a little piece of me. Well probably more than a little piece if I think about it.


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